3 FTSE 100 Shares Going Ex-Dividend Next Week: AstraZeneca plc, Diageo plc And GKN plc

It’s ex-dividend time for AstraZeneca plc (LON: AZN), Diageo plc (LON: DGE) and GKN plc (LON: GKN).

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If you want to be eligible for a dividend payment, or if you’re watching for possible share price falls, keeping up with ex-dividend dates can prove beneficial — as long as you hold the shares up to and including that day, you’ll get your money.

We have a number of FTSE 100 companies reaching that crucial date next week. Here are three of them that will go ex-dividend on Wednesday, 14 August:


AstraZeneca (LSE: AZN) (NYSE: AZN.US) shares will go ex-dividend with respect to a 90 cents-per-share interim dividend. Announced on 1 August, the payment is in line with the firm’s policy of paying a first dividend of around a third the value of the previous year’s total — last year shareholders received a total of $2.80 per share.

Current forecasts for the full year suggest a dividend in line with last year, of $2.80 (182p), and with the shares currently trading at 3,281p, that would provide a yield of about 5.6%. But that would be less than twice-covered, with falling earnings predicted for the next two years, and the shares down to a price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of under 10.


It’s final ex-dividend time for drinks giant Diageo (LSE: DGE) (NYSE: DEO.US), with a payment of 29.3p per share. Added to an earlier interim payment of 18.1p, that makes a total of 47.4p for a yield of 2.5% on the share price at the time. And while the yield is not high, largely due to share price growth of more then 80% over the past two years, Diageo does have a record of regularly raising its dividend above inflation — it’s done it every year this millennium so far.

With the share price up to 2,147p today, forecasts indicate a P/E of 19, which suggests to me that the recent price rise is at least set to slow. And if you want decent dividend income, I think there are better candidates out there now.


GKN (LSE: GKN) lifted its first-half dividend by 8% to 2.6p per share when the engineer released first-half results on 30 July, and ex-dividend day is next Wednesday. A similar rise in the final dividend would deliver 7.9p per share, and with the shares currently priced at 350p, that would provide a yield of 2.3%.

The firm did say its dividend rise was due to “improving trading performance“, telling us that “with a stronger second half profit performance anticipated, GKN expects 2013 to be a year of good progress for the group“, and that bodes well for future dividends.

Finally, dividends like these can add nicely to your investment returns — they can be spent or reinvested according to your needs. Whether investing for income or growth, good old cash is always welcome.

And that’s why I recommend the BRAND-NEW Fool report, “The Motley Fool’s Top Income Share For 2013“, in which our top analysts identify a share that they believe will provide handsome dividend income for years to come.

But it will only be available for a limited period, so click here to get your copy today.

> Alan does not own any shares mentioned in this article.

Should you invest, the value of your investment may rise or fall and your capital is at risk. Before investing, your individual circumstances should be assessed. Consider taking independent financial advice.

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