The Motley Fool

3 FTSE Shares Going Ex-Dividend: SSE PLC, Compass Group plc and Pennon Group plc

The FTSE 100 (FTSEINDICES: ^FTSE) made a tentative to 2014, going nowhere for the first couple of weeks of the year. But so far this week the index of top UK shares is up 76 points to 6,816. But in addition to share price gains, dividends form a significant part of FTSE 100 returns — last year the index provided an average yield of 3.0%, and there’s a further 3.1% forecast for the next 12 months.

If you do go for dividends, be sure to hold on to your shares until they pass their ex-dividend date or you won’t be eligible for the cash. The number of firms going ex-dividend is low at the moment, but here are three reaching their crucial dates over the next couple of weeks:

5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!

According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…

And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential...


It will be interim ex-dividend time for SSE (LSE: SSE) on Wednesday 22 January, with a first-half payment of 26p per share up for grabs — up 3.2% from the same period a year previously.

Adjusted pre-tax profit did fall, however, by 11.7% to £354m, with adjusted earnings per share (EPS) down 17.4% to 29.4p.

Forecasts for the full year indicate a dividend rise of 3.6% to yield a massive 6.4% on today’s 1,312p share price, and that seems more likely now that the firm has said it is on course for a full-year dividend rise that should beat RPI inflation. SSE also expects to continue to lift its annual payment by more than RPI inflation in subsequent years.

Compass Group

There’s a final dividend to come from Compass Group (LSE: CPG) on the same day, 22 January, of 16p per share, taking the total payout for the year up 12.7% to 24p per share.

The lift was made possible by a 12.5% rise in underlying earnings per share to 47.7p, from a 9.2% gain in underlying pre-tax profit to £1,188m. Forecasts for the next two years suggest dividend rises of 5% and 8% respectively.

This year’s payment provides a yield of a fairly modest 2.5% on the current share price of 966p, but the shares have gained around 28% over the past 12 months.

Pennon Group

Water utility Pennon Group (LSE: PNN) is our third, with an increase in its interim dividend of 7.2% to 9.39p per share — ex-dividend date is a week later, on Wednesday 29 January.

For the half-year to 30 September, Pennon saw a 3.5% rise in pre-tax profit to £110.9m, with adjusted EPS up 2.6% to 23.8p.

Pennon plans to boost its dividend by 4% per year above inflation up to the end of the 2014/15 year. With the shares trading at 678p, a similar rise at year-end this year would provide 30.5p per share for a yield of 4.5%.

“This Stock Could Be Like Buying Amazon in 1997”

I'm sure you'll agree that's quite the statement from Motley Fool Co-Founder Tom Gardner.

But since our US analyst team first recommended shares in this unique tech stock back in 2016, the value has soared.

What's more, we firmly believe there's still plenty of upside in its future. In fact, even throughout the current coronavirus crisis, its performance has been beating Wall St expectations.

And right now, we're giving you a chance to discover exactly what has got our analysts all fired up about this niche industry phenomenon, in our FREE special report, A Top US Share From The Motley Fool.

Click here to claim your copy now — and we’ll tell you the name of this Top US Share… free of charge!

> Alan does not own shares in any company mentioned.

Where to invest £1,000 right now

Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his select team of expert analysts at The Motley Fool UK have just revealed 6 "Best Buy" shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.

So if you’re looking for more top stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio in this market, then I have some good news for your today -- because we're offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our 'no quibbles' 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee.

Simply enter your email address below to discover how you can take advantage of this.