DENVER--(BUSINESS WIRE)--US dividend payments increased 4.6% on an underlying basis during the second quarter of 2023, according to the latest Janus Henderson Global Dividend Index. On a headline basis, which includes special dividends, exchange rate effects and other technical factors, US dividends climbed 2.6% to $148.0bn during the quarter. This marks the sixth consecutive quarter of slowing US dividend growth, however, 98% of US companies either raised their payouts or held them steady.
Notably, US healthcare companies were the biggest drivers of growth in Q2, led by UnitedHealth Group and Eli Lilly. US real estate companies came in at a close second, with logistics property specialist Prologis in front.
Globally, dividends rose to a new record in the second quarter, as payouts reached $568.1bn, up 4.9% on a headline basis. Underlying growth of 6.3% marked an acceleration compared to the first quarter and reflected Europe’s Q2 seasonal dominance – the period when most European companies make a single annual payment.
Europe ex-UK saw record dividends - 10.0% underlying growth exceeded other regions
European payouts rose by a tenth year-on-year (+9.7% headline, +10.0% underlying), the fastest of any region, taking the total to a record $184.5bn and reflecting strong profitability in the 2022 financial year. Significantly higher banking dividends were the most important driver of European growth, followed by vehicle manufacturers. Switzerland, France and Germany all saw record payouts.
Banks contributed half the world’s dividend growth in Q2
From a sector perspective bank dividends were strong all over the world with few exceptions. They accounted for half the global growth in Q2 as rising interest rates boosted margins and pandemic-related disruption to dividend payments finally worked its way out of the numbers.
Vehicle dividends also grew strongly, but mining payouts fell
Vehicle manufacturers accounted for one seventh of the year-on-year increase in Q2 global payouts. Half of this came from German companies, but the sector was strong all over the world. Miners made the biggest negative contribution, owing to lower commodity prices, while oil payouts fell owing to cuts from Latin American producers.
Globally, 88% of companies either increased dividends or held them steady in Q2.
2023 forecast unchanged owing to growing economic uncertainty
The second quarter was very positive, but with expectations for global economic growth slowing, Janus Henderson has made no change to its forecast for the full year. The global fund manager still expects payouts to rise 5.2% on a headline basis to a record $1.64 trillion, equivalent to underlying growth of 5.0%.
Ben Lofthouse, Head of Global Equity income at Janus Henderson said: “Economic growth around the world is moderating as it responds to higher interest rates. Markets now expect global profits to be flat this year, after soaring to record highs in 2022, and companies around the world are now more cautious about the outlook. While employment levels have remained very strong, parts of Europe have experienced technical recessions and policymakers everywhere are still intent on combatting inflation, even if it comes at the cost of output.
“We do expect dividend growth to continue, however. Most regions and sectors are delivering dividends in line with our expectations. We believe the banking sector in particular will continue to deliver solid growth for the rest of the year, making record payments to shareholders. A weaker economic environment is typically negative for banks, but the positive effect on bank margins from the end of years of ultra-low interest rates is very powerful and is driving dividend payouts. The big banks are very tightly regulated and so enter the downturn in a strong capital position.
“One of the reassuring features of dividend income is that it is typically much less volatile than earnings. Payouts lagged behind profit growth last year and so may potentially exceed it this year.”
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Notes to editors
Our headline growth rate describes the change in the total dollar amount paid by companies compared to the corresponding quarter each year. Our underlying figure adjusts for the distortion that can be caused by one-off special dividends, changing exchange rates, the effect of companies entering and leaving the global top 1,200 that comprise our index and the impact of changes in payment dates. The latter two tend to be negligible over the course of a whole year at the global level, though they can have a greater impact in any one quarter, geography or sector.
About Janus Henderson
Janus Henderson Group is a leading global active asset manager dedicated to helping clients define and achieve superior financial outcomes through differentiated insights, disciplined investments, and world-class service.
As of 30 June 2023, Janus Henderson had approximately US$322 billion in assets under management, more than 2,000 employees, and offices in 24 cities worldwide. Headquartered in London, the company is listed on the NYSE and the ASX.
Source: Janus Henderson Group plc
1 Underlying figures adjust for lower special dividends, exchange rates and minor technical factors
Source: Janus Henderson Global Dividend Index & Factset, June 2023
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