According to data from Bolsas y Mercados Españoles (BME), in 2022, the remuneration paid by Spanish listed companies stood at 25,964.47 million euros, 26.8% more than the 20,474 million recorded a year earlier.
It also increased by 38.7% compared to 2020, a year in which dividends were reduced (18,709 million euros) due to the restrictions suffered by the banking sector and the prudence with which companies operated due to the coronavirus crisis.
The same BME data updated this January indicate that of the total remuneration obtained by shareholders in 2022 (those 25,964.47), the majority, 25,276.44 million euros corresponded to dividends (32.5% more) and another 683.03 million, to refunds of issue premiums. A further 5 million corresponded to capital reductions with repayment of contributions.
During the year, the month in which most dividends were paid out was April, with 4,439.86 million euros, followed by July, when 3,821.53 million euros were paid out.
In the last months of the year, November and December, which are usually intense in the payment of dividends, companies paid out some 5,800 million euros.
For BME, the dividends of Spanish listed companies have historically been of great importance and this has been largely endorsed in 2022. "For years, the Spanish market has consistently led the developed stock markets in dividend yields, one of the market's attractions for international investors".
At the end of the year, the dividend yield of the Spanish stock market reached 4%, according to MSCI index data.
BME recalls that listed Spanish companies with the longest tradition of generous payout policies have recovered and even increased their payouts after the pandemic, which caused major anomalies in the financial position and liquidity of a large number of companies.
Of the total volume of dividends paid, BME explains that most have been distributed through the four most commonly used formulas by companies: cash dividends, dividends paid in shares (scrip), the return of share premiums and capital reductions with the return of contributions.
Another shareholder remuneration formula that has grown strongly this year in Spain has been share buybacks and their subsequent redemption.
According to the latest available data from BME (as of November 2022), Merlin Properties is the company with the highest dividend yield on the IBEX 35 in 2022, 10.4%, followed by Enagás, 9.8%, and Telefónica, 8.2%.
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