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Could anyone please clarify a confusion for me ? I am fairly new to stock investing and more specifically to dividend investing. I understand dividend dates (declaration, ex-dividend, report, payment) and the implications of each. What’s not clear to me is if there is only one ex-dividend date per year for a given stock or if there is one every trimester ?

For example, Let’s say Coca Cola stock ex-dividend date was August 1st 2020 and I decide to purchase it now (August 28th), does that mean I will not benefit from any dividend payments until after the August 2021 ex-dividend date one year from now ?

Or is there an opportunity to receive dividend payments throughout the year ?

I cannot tell if there are multiple ex-dividend dates throughout the year or just one.

Thanks for the help

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  • Trimester gotta be pretty rate. I don't know of any stock paying dividends 3 times a year – xyious Sep 14 '20 at 15:14
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What’s not clear to me is if there is only one ex-dividend date per year for a given stock or if there is one every trimester ?

There's one ex-dividend date for each dividend payment. Typically that's quarterly, but occasionally companies will pay in other frequencies or irregular "special dividends" in unusual circumstances.

Let’s say Coca Cola stock ex-dividend date was August 1st 2020 and I decide to purchase it now (August 28th), does that mean I will not benefit from any dividend payments until after the August 2021 ex-dividend date one year from now ?

No, it means that you do not get the dividend that was paid in early August. If you own the stock on the next ex-div date, you will be entitled to the dividend.

Since you are new to stocks, I will also make a semantic argument that you do not "benefit" from the dividend at all. A dividend payment is cash out of the door for the company, so the value of the company (and hence the stock) is reduced by the same amount. You'd trading a little bit of your stock value for an equal amount of cash.

It's not like, say, interest on a bond where the interest paid increases your overall value.

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The vast majority of stocks pay dividends quarterly, approximately 3 months apart. The are a small amount that pay monthly or semi-annually.

There are lots of web sites that will provide dividend information. Fidelity offers historical dividends here.

If you google "Dividend Calendar" you'll find lots of others as well. Here's the one for the NASDAQ and one at Market Chameleon.

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  • Siemens actually pays a yearly dividend, which I don't think is that rare – xyious Sep 14 '20 at 15:15
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Most stocks pay dividends quarterly (every three months). When "the" ex-dividend date is listed, it is the most recently announced one. The exact date within the month can vary; the next one will be announced when it gets closer.

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  • So for a stock that pays a dividend quarterly, an ex-dividend date will be announced before each dividend payment ? – Yassine Alami Aug 28 '20 at 18:35
  • @YassineAlami Yes. – Flux Aug 28 '20 at 19:46
  • The company announces the ex-dividend and record dates well before the ex-dividend date, – Bob Baerker Sep 14 '20 at 16:06

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