Emera’s new target cuts its risk

Article Excerpt

Emera now plans to raise its annual dividend rate between 4% and 5% each year through 2021. That’s down from its previous aim to raise the dividend 8% annually through 2020. The company cut that growth target to conserve cash for new projects and pay down debt. However, those moves put Emera in a stronger position to keep raising its dividend well beyond 2020. EMERA INC. $44 (Toronto symbol EMA; Income-Growth Payer Portfolio, Utilities sector; Shares outstanding: 232.9 million; Market cap: $10.2 billion; Dividend yield: 5.3%; Dividend Sustainability Rating: Highest; www.emera.com) owns 100% of Nova Scotia Power, that province’s main electricity supplier. It contributes 20% of Emera’s earnings. Emera took its current form in July 1998 as a holding company for Nova Scotia Power Over 90% of its earnings come from regulated operations Aims to pay out 70% to 75% of its adjusted net income as dividends The remaining 80% of earnings come from the company’s investments in several power plants and gas pipelines in the…

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