IHS Markit projects aggregate dividend payouts from corporations in Asia-Pacific (APAC) region to remain relatively resilient amid the COVID-19 pandemic, led by mainland China and Hong Kong SAR - Photo by CFO

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Total dividend payouts are expected to hit $1.9 trillion in 2020, an increase of 5.5 percent from 2019, according to a new report from business information provider IHS Markit (NYSE: INFO). In 2019, dividend payouts grew 4.5 percent from the preceding year.

“Following the challenging economic and geopolitical landscape of 2019, our estimates suggest that companies are more optimistic this year, as central banks around the world implement monetary stimulus measures to boost sentiment,” said Thomas Matheson, head of dividend research at IHS Markit.

“The anticipated increase in dividend growth this year is also consistent with indications from the latest Global PMI, which rose to an eight-month high in December, and our forecast that global growth will stabilize at 2.5 percent in 2020,” he adds.

According to IHS Markit, all regions are expected to register higher dividends this year. Dividends in the United States (US) will grow 7.1 percent driven by the technology, oil and gas and health care sectors. Dividends in the Asia Pacific (APAC) will grow 5.5 percent, anchored by mainland China, Hong Kong SAR, and India.

Dividends from European Union (EU) are predicted to increase at a slower pace of 3.5 percent, partially weighed down by the new EU emission regulations and revision in capital contribution principle restrictions in Switzerland.

The report predicts that the banking sector is expected to remain the top dividend payer, with payouts forecast to be US$298.7 billion, up from $281.6 billion last year. Dividend growth from banks in the US, EU, and APAC is expected to come in at 11.2 percent, 8.0 percent, and 3.7 percent, respectively.

The Automobiles & Parts sector is projected to replace the Telecommunications sector as the most vulnerable sector in 2020 as dividends from automakers are estimated to fall by around 5 percent to $46.4 billion this year. Automakers in APAC and Europe account for around 85 percent of the dividends from this sector and payouts will be constrained by headwinds such as new EU emission regulations and flagging auto sales.

The report also reveals distributions from emerging markets are predicted to increase by 5.6 percent, marginally higher than the 5.5 percent forecast for companies in developed markets. A projected fall in dividends from export-driven economies such as Taiwan and South Korea reflects the drag from the US-China trade war.

The Food & Beverage sector is making a comeback and the sector is estimated to increase its payouts by 10.6 percent this year, after registering a fall of 2 percent in payouts in 2019.

The 2020 Dividend Forecast draws on a bottom-up analysis of 7,700 companies.

Written by Staff Editor, Email: theinsiderstories@gmail.com