General Dynamics: Dividend Stock Analysis

| About: General Dynamics (GD)

Linked here is a detailed quantitative analysis of General Dynamics (NYSE:GD). Below are some highlights from the above linked analysis.

Company Description

General Dynamics is the world's fifth largest military contractor and also one of the world's biggest makers of corporate jets.

Fair Value

In calculating fair value, I consider the NPV MMA Differential Fair Value, along with these four calculations of fair value (see pg. 2 of the linked PDF above for a detailed description):

  1. Avg. High Yield Price
  2. 20-Year DCF Price
  3. Avg. P/E Price
  4. Graham Number

GD is trading at a discount to only No. 3 above. Since GD's tangible book value is not meaningful, a Graham number can not be calculated. The stock is trading at a slight discount to its calculated fair value of $70.71. GD earned a Star in this section since it is trading at a fair value.

Dividend Analytical Data

In this section, there are three possible Stars and three key metrics (see pg. 2 of the linked PDF for a detailed description):

  1. Free Cash Flow Payout
  2. Debt To Total Capital
  3. Key Metrics
  4. Dividend Growth Rate
  5. Years of Div. Growth
  6. Rolling Four-Year Div. > 15%

GD earned three Stars in this section for No. 1, No. 2, and No. 3 above. A Star was earned since the Free Cash Flow payout ratio was less than 60% and there were no negative Free Cash Flows over the last 10 years. The stock earned a Star as a result of its most recent Debt to Total Capital being less than 45%. GD earned a Star for having an acceptable score in at least two of the four Key Metrics measured. The company has paid a cash dividend to shareholders every year since 1979 and has increased its dividend payments for 21 consecutive years.

Dividend Income Vs. MMA

Why would you assume the equity risk and invest in a dividend stock if you could earn a better return in a much less risky money market account (MMA) or Treasury bond? This section compares the earning ability of this stock with a high-yield MMA. Two items are considered in this section (see pg. 2 of the linked PDF for a detailed description):

  1. NPV MMA Diff.
  2. Years to > MMA

GD earned a Star in this section for its NPV MMA Diff. of the $1,864. This amount is in excess of the $1,400 target I look for in a stock that has increased dividends as long as GD has. The stock's current yield of 2.98% exceeds the 2.6% estimated 20-year average MMA rate.

Memberships and Peers

GD is a member of the S&P 500 and a member of the Broad Dividend Achievers™ Index. The company's peer group includes Boeing (NYSE:BA), with a 2.4% yield; Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT), with a 4.4% yield; and Textron (NYSE:TXT), with a 0.3% yield.


GD earned one Star in the Fair Value section, earned three Stars in the Dividend Analytical Data section and earned one Star in the Dividend Income vs. MMA section for a total of five Stars. This quantitatively ranks GD as a Five-Star Very Strong stock.

Using my D4L-PreScreen model, I determined the share price would need to decrease to $76.14 before GD's NPV MMA Differential increased to the $1,400 minimum that I look for in a stock with 21 years of consecutive dividend increases. At that price the stock would yield 2.6%.

Resetting the D4L-PreScreen model and solving for the dividend growth rate needed to generate the target $1,400 NPV MMA Differential, the calculated rate is 8.1%. This dividend growth rate is slightly above the 9.3% used in this analysis, thus providing no margin of safety. GD has a risk rating of 1.25, which classifies it as a low-risk stock.

Additional defense budget cuts are likely. However, GD with its diversified offerings, is in one of the best positions to survive them. Aerospace, particularly for large-cabin aircraft, should drive GD's growth over the next several years. Deliveries of large-cabin aircraft rose in the first half of 2012 to 50, up from 40 in 2011.

The company has a pristine balance sheet with low free cash flow payout and debt to total capital. GD keeps its yield competitive through annual dividend increases. Earlier it raised its dividend 8.5% to $0.51 per share. Although the stock is trading below my $70.71 calculated fair value price, I will limit significant purchases until after the election.

Disclosure: At the time of this writing, I was long in GD (1.7% of my Dividend Growth Portfolio). See a list of all my dividend growth holdings here.

Disclaimer: Material presented here is for informational purposes only. The above quantitative stock analysis, including the Star rating, is mechanically calculated and is based on historical information. The analysis assumes the stock will perform in the future as it has in the past. This is generally never true. Before buying or selling any stock you should do your own research and reach your own conclusion. See my full disclaimer for more information.