98% of dividend cuts caught in advance

Dividend Safety Scores cut through the noise to assess how likely a company is to put its dividend on the chopping block. Scores are available for thousands of stocks and can help you generate safer income.

Exclusive to Simply Safe Dividends, Dividend Safety Scores were created by our founder, Brian Bollinger, who is a CPA and former partner at a multi-billion dollar investment firm. Our scoring system analyzes a company's most important financial metrics (payout ratios, debt levels, recession performance, and much more) to determine the likelihood of a dividend cut. You can learn more about how Dividend Safety Scores are calculated here.

Our Realtime Track Record

We aim to set the bar for transparency in this industry. Below is a complete list of all 172 dividend cuts recorded since our scoring system's inception in 2015, as well each company's Dividend Safety Score before the cut was announced. Scores range from 0 to 100.

Investors who stuck with companies that scored above 60 (our Safe and Very Safe categories) would have avoided 98% (170 of 172) of the cuts, including Kinder Morgan, ConocoPhillips, National Oilwell Varco, and General Electric.

172 Dividend Cuts

June 28, 2018
20
Very Unsafe
SCANA (SCG) slashed its dividend by 80% to preserve cash. The utility is seeking a resolution with regulators to recover costs for its failed $7.7 billion nuclear construction project. Shareholders, rather than utility ratepayers, will likely be on the hook for a substantial amount of the project's loss.
June 18, 2018
8
Very Unsafe
Himax Technologies (HIMX) reduced its annual dividend by 57% due to weak results in its cyclical semiconductor business, as well as the firm’s need to ramp up spending to expand its manufacturing capacity. 
June 15, 2018
8
Very Unsafe
Anworth Mortgage Asset Corporation (ANH), a mortgage REIT, moved its dividend lower by 7% due to its high payout ratio and interest rate volatility that lowered the value of its investment portfolio.
June 14, 2018
12
Very Unsafe
Arlington Investment Corp (AI) reduced its dividend by 32%. Rising interest rates reduced the value of its mortgage-related investments, and the firm maintains a high payout ratio and substantial financial leverage. 
June 14, 2018
6
Very Unsafe
Capstead Mortgage (CMO) saw its portfolio value decline and borrowing costs rise as interest rates fluctuated, forcing the mortgage REIT to cut its dividend by 13%.
May 21, 2018
3
Very Unsafe
Libbey (LBY) suspended its dividend in order to increase the glass manufacturer’s focus on debt reduction. 
May 15, 2018
0
Very Unsafe
Nordic American Offshore (NAO) dropped its dividend by 50% as the offshore oil & gas shipping market remained weak, keeping pressure on the capital intensive and unprofitable vessel company. 
May 3, 2018
25
Unsafe
Aceto (ACET) slashed its dividend by 85% in response to the continued down cycle in the generics drug industry and the pressure it put on the company’s high debt load. 
May 2, 2018
30
Unsafe
TC Pipelines, LP (TCP) was adversely affected by a change in MLP regulations. The company needed to deleverage to prepare for lower future cash flow, and cutting its distribution by 35% was part of the solution. 
April 27, 2018
0
Very Unsafe
Nordic American Tankers (NAT) slashed its dividend by 67% as a weak tanker market caused the indebted vessel company to operate at a loss.  
April 26, 2018
23
Unsafe
SunCoke Energy Partners, L.P. (SXCP) reduced its distribution by 33% in order to help the company further pay down debt and maintain some cushion for its credit facility’s leverage covenant. 
April 18, 2018
4
Very Unsafe
Dynagas LNG Partners LP (DLNG) cut its distribution by 41% following a strategic review of the business. Management desired to improve the energy MLP's coverage ratio and strengthen its balance sheet after a drop in charter rates caused operating cash flow to decline.
April 6, 2018
7
Very Unsafe
Franklin Street Properties (FSP) reduced its dividend for the first time since 2008, announcing a 53% cut as the REIT transitions its property portfolio from a suburban to an urban orientation which results in higher leasing costs per square foot.
March 28, 2018
26
Unsafe
LaSalle Hotel Properties (LHO), a hotel REIT, cut its dividend by 50%. The firm saw revenue per available room decline in 2017 and expected another dip in 2018 as supply growth in many of its markets pressured the REIT's cash flow. 
March 26, 2018
15
Very Unsafe
Navios Maritime Midstream Partners L.P. (NAP) owns and operates tanker vessels. The company chopped its dividend by 70% in response to challenging market conditions and its need to maintain a healthy balance sheet. 
March 16, 2018
10
Very Unsafe
Five Oaks Investment Corp (OAK) dropped its dividend by 40% as a flattening yield curve hurt the mortgage REIT’s investment income. These businesses maintain high payout ratios and use significant financial leverage, so there is little margin for error. 
March 15, 2018
6
Very Unsafe
Capstead Mortgage (CMO) cut its dividend by 16% as shorter term interest rates increased at a faster pace than longer term interest rates, pushing down the value of the REIT’s mortgage-related investments.
March 14, 2018
11
Very Unsafe
Alcentra Capital (ABDC) is a business development company that cut its dividend by 28% due to underperforming credit investments and yield compression. 
March 12, 2018
7
Very Unsafe
National CineMedia (NCMI) announced a 23% dividend cut as its profits fell and the heavily indebted cinema advertising company needed more cash to reinvest in its business as it combats declining movie theater traffic.
March 8, 2018
8
Very Unsafe
CYS Investments (CYS) reduced its dividend by 12% after the mortgage REIT was challenged by falling investment income. 
March 8, 2018
26
Unsafe
IDT (IDT) swung to a loss and decided to invest more heavily in its growth initiatives, leading the telecom business to cut its dividend by 53%
February 27, 2018
1
Very Unsafe
Frontier Communications (FTR) eliminated its dividend to save cash since the telecom company was losing money and on the path towards bankruptcy. 
February 21, 2018
20
Very Unsafe
Macquarie Infrastructure Company (MIC), the fuel storage infrastructure specialist, dropped its dividend by 31%, sending its stock price tumbling more than 40%. The dividend cut will conserve cash to help the highly leveraged MLP preserve its credit rating and invest in growth projects after failing to renew some oil client contracts.
February 20, 2018
4
Very Unsafe
Dine Brands Global (DIN) chopped its dividend by 35% as its Applebee's and IHOP restaurant chains struggled and the company maintained a very high debt load.
February 9, 2018
17
Very Unsafe
Oaktree Strategic Income (OCSI) was challenged by volatile investment income and a high payout ratio, forcing the business development company to reduce its dividend by 26%.
February 8, 2018
15
Very Unsafe
NuStar GP Holdings, LLC (NSH) cut its distribution by 40% as the indebted MLP struggled to cover its payout and no longer had affordable access to external financing.
February 8, 2018
9
Very Unsafe
Harvest Capital Credit (HCAP) reduced its dividend by 16% after experiencing a significant drop in investment income. Shortly after, the firm delayed filing its annual report, underscoring the risks, complexities, and challenges of investing in many business development companies. 
February 8, 2018
15
Very Unsafe
Oaktree Specialty Lending (OCSL) cut its dividend by 32% due to a decline in the business development company's investment income.   
February 8, 2018
8
Very Unsafe
NuStar Energy L.P. (NS) plunged as much as 21% on news that the pipeline operator was cutting its distribution by 45%. Costly acquisitions, hurricane damage, excessive financial leverage, and a need to free up more cash for investments were all factors. 
February 7, 2018
0
Very Unsafe
Navios Maritime Acquisition (NNA), an owner and operator of tanker vessels, cut its dividend by 60% to preserve cash as the business struggled with too much debt and weak end market conditions. 
February 7, 2018
12
Very Unsafe
Collectors Universe (CLCT) lowered its dividend by 50% in response to a challenging quarter, an unsustainable payout ratio, and a need for the collectibles authenticator to redirect more cash toward growth opportunities. 
January 5, 2018
13
Very Unsafe
Five Oaks Investment Corp (OAKS) slashed its dividend by 33% as a flattening yield curve hurt the mortgage REIT's investment income.
December 21, 2017
1
Very Unsafe
Bluerock Residential (BRG) announced a 44% reduction to its dividend driven by the apartment REIT's decision to internalize its external management structure and implement a more sustainable payout ratio. 
December 20, 2017
91
Very Safe
PG&E (PCG) temporarily suspended its dividend. Wildfires were causing extensive damage throughout California, and regulated utility PG&E was under investigation to see if it caused some of the fires. If so, the company would face a large liability. 

PG&E decided to preserve cash by temporarily suspending its dividend until more is known about the ongoing situation. We are not sure much could have been done to get in front of this one. This was a rather binary outcome that seemed to have a low probability at the time and couldn’t be traced in PG&E’s financial statements, which were otherwise in decent shape, or identified in analysts' earnings estimates for the year ahead, which were healthy.

December 14, 2017
44
Borderline
Teva Pharmaceutical (TEVA) suspended its dividend entirely and was a great example of the dangers of debt. Prior to its dividend cut, Teva maintained a payout ratio below 30%, had paid uninterrupted dividends for more than 20 years, and was generating solid cash flow.

However, the company's debt spiked following its $40.5 billion acquisition of Actavis Generics in 2016. As generic drug prices came under pressure, Teva's urgency to conserve cash flow to service its debt load increased, ultimately resulting in two dividend cuts.

We have since added a new debt metric to our scoring system to better identify situations like Teva's, and we now also make use of forward-looking analyst estimates to spot companies with fundamentals that are more likely to continue deteriorating.
December 13, 2017
5
Very Unsafe
KCAP Financial (KCAP) was forced to lower its dividend by 17% due to a fall in its net investment income, which commonly causes issues for business development companies given their very high payout ratios.
December 12, 2017
13
Very Unsafe
Ellington Residential Mortgage REIT (EARN) reduced its dividend by 8% in response to a flattening yield curve, which reduced its net interest margin and core earnings. 
November 13, 2017
18
Very Unsafe
General Electric (GE) cut its dividend by 50% to better align its payout with the firm's declining cash flow, preserve cash in light of its high financial leverage, and adjust its capital allocation framework under its new CEO. 
November 9, 2017
6
Very Unsafe
FS Investment (FSIC) lowered its dividend by 15% as underperforming investments and a high payout ratio weighed on the business development company.
November 7, 2017
44
Borderline
EVERTEC (EVTC) is a small-cap transaction processing business with operations centered in Latin America. Despite having a payout ratio near 20% at the time, management decided to temporarily suspend the firm's dividend due to unstable and uncertain operating conditions in Puerto Rico. 

Interestingly, EVTC's stock price has since rallied more than 50%. Regardless, our scoring system now handles smaller companies more conservatively, reflecting their generally more concentrated business activities and more dynamic capital allocation policies.
November 2, 2017
18
Very Unsafe
CBL & Associates Properties (CBL) cut its dividend by 25% as the REIT had too much debt and declining funds from operations.
November 2, 2017
8
Very Unsafe
Alcentra Capital Corporation (ABDC) dropped its dividend by 27%. Underperforming investments and a high payout ratio led to the business development company's dividend reduction.
November 1, 2017
5
Very Unsafe
Ellington Financial (EFC) cut its dividend by 9% in order to free up additional capital for new investments. 
October 26, 2017
14
Very Unsafe
Suburban Propane Partners (SPH) ran into trouble as two consecutive warm winters reduced demand for its propane and further stretched its weak balance sheet, causing the firm to reduce its dividend by 32%.
October 25, 2017
12
Very Unsafe
Waddell & Reed Financial (WDR) slashed its dividend by 46% as the investment manager continued experiencing asset outflows that pushed its payout ratio near 90%.
October 12, 2017
22
Unsafe
Genesis Energy, LP (GEL) needed to strengthen its balance sheet in order to continue having access to affordable capital for its growth projects, forcing the midstream energy MLP to chop its distribution by 31%
October 6, 2017
6
Very Unsafe
National American University (NAUH) eliminated its dividend entirely as the accredited institution of higher learning was in desperate need to preserve liquidity given its operational struggles, large debt burden, and spiking payout ratio. 
September 15, 2017
51
Borderline
ATN International (ATNI), a small-cap telecom company, had increased its dividend for 20 consecutive years. Despite its healthy payout ratio and sub-3% yield, management decided to "strategically shift" the firm's capital allocation by reducing the firm’s dividend by 50% in favor of using the capital to invest more in growth opportunities. 

There is not an easy way to get in front of a shift like this when a firm's underlying fundamentals are solid, but we rate small-cap stocks more conservatively today since they can have more dynamic capital allocation policies over time.
September 14, 2017
11
Very Unsafe
Capstead Mortgage (CMO) lowered its dividend by 10% as net interest margins declined due to higher mortgage prepayment levels and higher borrowing costs, which pressured the mortgage REIT’s high payout ratio. 
August 30, 2017
3
Very Unsafe
Ship Finance International (SFL) cut its dividend by 22% due to the soft tanker market and the company’s dangerously high debt load. 
August 28, 2017
11
Very Unsafe
Prospect Capital (PSEC) reduced its dividend by 28%. The business development company’s net investment income declined due to the firm’s desire to avoid riskier investments and reduce originations.
August 25, 2017
23
Unsafe
Plains GP Holdings LP (PAGP) needed to reduce debt to reach its targeted credit markets and lessen its dependence on raising growth capital via issuing equity. As a result, the midstream MLP slashed its distribution by 46%
August 25, 2017
19
Very Unsafe
Plains All American Pipeline, L.P. (PAA) needed to reduce debt to reach its targeted credit markets and lessen its dependence on raising growth capital via issuing equity. As a result, the midstream MLP slashed its distribution by 46%
August 10, 2017
39
Unsafe
Chicago Bridge & Iron Company (CBI) completely eliminated its dividend despite maintaining a low payout ratio, sending its stock down over 25% on the news. The engineering and construction company was saddled with debt and dealing with depressed business results. 
August 3, 2017
3
Very Unsafe
Teekay Offshore Partners L.P. (TOO), a marine energy transportation company, cut its dividend by 91% due to too much debt, falling distributable cash flow, and weak end market conditions.
August 3, 2017
2
Very Unsafe
RAIT Financial (RAS) chopped its dividend by 44% as management stepped up efforts to lower financial leverage and refocus the business on its core commercial real estate lending operations. 
August 3, 2017
44
Borderline
Teva Pharmaceutical (TEVA) cut its dividend by 75% and was a great example of the dangers of debt. Prior to its dividend cut, Teva maintained a payout ratio below 30%, had paid uninterrupted dividends for more than 20 years, and was generating solid cash flow.

However, the company's debt spiked following its $40.5 billion acquisition of Actavis Generics in 2016. As generic drug prices came under pressure, Teva's urgency to conserve cash flow to service its debt load increased, ultimately resulting in two dividend cuts (management suspended the dividend in December 2017).

We have since added a new debt metric to our scoring system to better identify situations like Teva's, and we now also make use of forward-looking analyst estimates to spot companies with fundamentals that are more likely to continue deteriorating.
August 3, 2017
1
Very Unsafe
Bristow Group (BRS) cut its dividend by 79% after a severe cyclical downturn in the offshore energy market caused the helicopter services business to operate at a loss. 
August 3, 2017
0
Very Unsafe
Windstream Holdings (WIN) saw its stock price plunge nearly 30% after it announced it was eliminating its dividend. The indebted telecom company was losing customers, needed to de-lever, and faced large expenditures to build out its fiber network.
July 21, 2017
0
Very Unsafe
Nordic American Tankers (NAT) slashed its dividend by 25% due to the capital-intensive shipping company’s declining cash flow and weak balance sheet.
June 16, 2017
12
Very Unsafe
Arlington Asset Investment Corp (AI) lowered its dividend by 12% to strengthen the investment firm’s balance sheet and better protect itself from instability in the mortgage sector.
June 14, 2017
2
Very Unsafe
Mattel (MAT) cut its dividend by 61% due to its unsustainable payout ratio, high debt load, and need to reinvest for growth as its iconic toy brands, such as Barbie, struggled in an increasingly digital world. 
June 14, 2017
4
Very Unsafe
Ampco-Pittsburgh Corporation (AP), an engineering products business, suspended its dividend entirely to put the funds towards debt repayment and growth initiatives to turn the unprofitable company around.
June 12, 2017
6
Very Unsafe
CIM Commercial Trust (CMCT), an office REIT, reduced its dividend by 43% as its payout ratio was too high after divesting various properties. 
May 22, 2017
2
Very Unsafe
Wheeler Real Estate Investment Trust (WHLR) slashed its dividend by 19% to conserve cash due to the retail REIT’s heavy debt load. 
May 18, 2017
0
Very Unsafe
Stage Stores (SSI) announced a 67% reduction to its dividend in response to a weak retail environment and the firm’s need to strengthen its balance sheet.
May 17, 2017
0
Very Unsafe
Stein Mart (SMRT) responded to a weak retail environment, its heavy debt load, and declining earnings by eliminating its dividend entirely.
May 10, 2017
11
Very Unsafe
Time Inc. (TIME) chopped its dividend by 79% due to a severe decline in print advertising revenue and the company’s substantial amount of debt. Shares plunged 17% on the news.
May 9, 2017
9
Very Unsafe
Medley Capital (MCC) was forced to lower its dividend by 27% as a result of the business development company’s decreasing net investment income and high payout ratio.
May 2, 2017
5
Very Unsafe
Frontier Communications (FTR), a telecom services provider, announced a 62% cut to its dividend after struggling with customer losses and too much financial leverage.
April 28, 2017
13
Very Unsafe
Enbridge Energy Management, LLC (EEQ) chopped its dividend by 40% in order to strengthen its balance sheet and maintain a more sustainable coverage ratio. The energy company’s cash flow was hurt from weak commodity markets.
April 28, 2017
33
Unsafe
Enbridge Energy Partners, L.P. (EEP) was challenged by weak commodity markets, heavy debt, and a need to internally fund more of its growth projects. As a result, the midstream energy MLP decreased its distribution by 40%.
April 21, 2017
4
Very Unsafe
CSI Compressco LP (CCLP) suffered from high debt and weak energy prices. As a result, the natural gas company reduced its dividend by 50%.
March 23, 2017
46
Borderline
Superior Industries (SUP), a small-cap vehicle wheel manufacturer, cut its dividend by 50%. The firm announced a transformative acquisition to nearly double in size. Due to its higher cost of financing as a smaller company, management reduced the dividend to help afford the deal. 

Superior Industries had paid uninterrupted dividends for more than 20 years prior to this event, so the cut was a surprise that could not have been predicted ahead of time without knowing the firm's intentions to make a big acquisition. We treat smaller firms more conservatively today to recognize their generally more dynamic capital allocation policies.
March 22, 2017
3
Very Unsafe
Dynex Capital (DX) slashed its dividend by 14% when the mortgage REIT was faced with higher interest rates, rising financing costs, and an unsustainable payout ratio.
March 16, 2017
7
Very Unsafe
Capstead Mortgage (CMO) struggled after portfolio yields did not improve as management had expected. As a result, the mortgage REIT cut its dividend by 9%.
March 16, 2017
2
Very Unsafe
New York Mortgage Trust (NYMT) experienced financial difficulties resulting in a dividend reduction of 17% when financial and bond markets became more volatile.
March 14, 2017
0
Very Unsafe
OHA Investment Corporation’s (OHAI) portfolio invested too much in weak energy companies, hurting its profitability. In order to help the highly leveraged business development company recover, its dividend was lowered by 67%.
March 13, 2017
4
Very Unsafe
Cypress Energy Partners, L.P. (CELP) is a pipeline services provider to the energy industry. In order to conserve cash due to its heavy debt load and softening commodity prices, the company chopped its distribution by 48%.
March 9, 2017
27
Unsafe
Manning & Napier (MN), an investment manager, experienced a meaningful decline in its assets under its management. As a result of its falling earnings and elevated payout ratio near 100%, the firm’s dividend was slashed by 50%.
March 8, 2017
5
Very Unsafe
BlackRock Capital Investment Corporation (BKCC) lowered its dividend 14% in response to underperforming investments the business development company had made in the troubled oil and gas sector.
March 2, 2017
14
Very Unsafe
TICC Capital (TICC) reduced its dividend by 31% as tighter loan spreads reduced the business development company’s investment income.
February 28, 2017
1
Very Unsafe
Seaspan (SSW), a water vessel leasing company, was challenged by excess industry supply and heavy debt. Management dropped the dividend by 67%.
February 23, 2017
21
Unsafe
Nevsun Resources (NSU), a base metals mining and exploration company, found itself needing more cash to fund large projects as it encountered production challenges and declining profitability. The business cut its dividend by 75%.
February 16, 2017
27
Unsafe
GNC Holdings (GNC) eliminated its dividend entirely after the health and wellness products retailer faced falling same-store sales and high debt.
February 15, 2017
19
Very Unsafe
Equity One (EQY) reduced its dividend by 18% as the shopping center REIT struggled with its high payout ratio and the continued rise of online shopping. 
February 13, 2017
14
Very Unsafe
Highway Holdings (HIHO), an industrial components manufacturer, chopped its dividend by 30% as it faced declining sales, lower profitability, a high payout ratio, and a dangerous amount of financial leverage.
February 13, 2017
6
Very Unsafe
Scorpio Tankers (STNG) slashed its dividend by 92% as a result of the tank vessel company’s heavy debt and declining cash flow as petroleum transportation markets remained weak.
February 9, 2017
27
Unsafe
Columbia Property Trust (CXP) cut its dividend by 33% due to the office REIT’s disposal of lower quality properties and need to strengthen its balance sheet.
February 9, 2017
11
Very Unsafe
Fifth Street Finance Corp (FSC) slashed its dividend by 61% as the business development company responded to its declining investment income, excessive financial leverage, and need to restructure.
February 9, 2017
18
Very Unsafe
Alon USA Partners, LP (ALDW), an integrated downstream oil refinery company, dropped its dividend by 27% after the MLP experienced declining sales, falling distributable cash flow, and increasingly risk credit metrics. 
February 7, 2017
16
Very Unsafe
The Mosaic Company (MOS), a phosphate and potash producer, cut its dividend by 46% after weak fertilizer markets, declining cash flow, and too much debt pressured the business. 
January 25, 2017
16
Very Unsafe
Ericsson (ERIC), a diversified communications equipment provider, responded to challenging telecom market conditions and its heavy debt burden by reducing its dividend by 73%.
January 25, 2017
31
Unsafe
Meridian Bioscience (VIVO) turned to slashing its dividend by 38% as the life science company’s most profitable segment was weak and recovering slower than expected, creating a dangerously high payout ratio. The stock was down over 20% on the news.
January 23, 2017
0
Very Unsafe
Nordic American Tankers (NAT) lowered its dividend by 23% as weak shipping market conditions caused cash flow to decline, the company’s balance sheet was strained, and the capital-intensive tanker business needed to preserve capital. 
January 18, 2017
17
Very Unsafe
Pearson (PSO) suffered from declining demand for its textbooks and its significant financial leverage. The educational products company reduced its dividend by 72%.
January 3, 2017
1
Very Unsafe
ARMOUR Residential REIT (ARR) experienced declining revenue and needed to conserve cash due to its heavy debt load and high payout ratio. The mortgage REIT lowered its dividend by 14%.
December 15, 2016
0
Very Unsafe
Resource Capital Corporation (RSO) suffered from underperforming debt investments, high financial leverage, and an unsustainable payout ratio. In response, the mortgage REIT slashed its dividend by 88%.
December 14, 2016
1
Very Unsafe
KCAP Financial (KCAP) is a business development company that cut its dividend by 20% due to falling net investment income and its stretched balanced sheet.
December 13, 2016
28
Unsafe
Liberty Property Trust (LPT), an industrial and office REIT, reduced its dividend by 16% in response to the company’s restructuring and asset sales, which will reduce future cash flow. 
December 12, 2016
12
Very Unsafe
Investors Real Estate Trust (IRT) cut its dividend by 46% as the diversified REIT combatted a high payout ratio and declining cash flow caused by volatile energy markets and increased supply. 
December 8, 2016
1
Very Unsafe
CoreCivic (CXW), a REIT providing prison facilities used by government agencies, slashed its dividend by 22% due to declining cash flow and regulatory headwinds as several federal agencies considered ending their use of privately run prisons.
December 7, 2016
1
Very Unsafe
Comtech Telecommunications (CMTL) was strained by its significant financial leverage and challenging business conditions. The communications equipment business cut its dividend by 67%.
December 1, 2016
2
Very Unsafe
Allegheny Technologies (ATI), a specialty metals manufacturer, suspended its dividend entirely due to weak end markets and a desperate need to shore up its indebted balance sheet.
November 21, 2016
6
Very Unsafe
PennantPark (PNNT) reduced its dividend by 36% after the investment firm suffered from weak energy markets, falling yields, and decreasing investment income.
November 18, 2016
9
Very Unsafe
Daxor Corporation (DXR), a medical and biotechnology company, lowered its dividend by 33% to free up cash for investment.  
November 9, 2016
4
Very Unsafe
THL Credit (TCRD) was challenged by lower yields and refused to invest in riskier assets. Combined with its high payout ratio, the business development company was forced to reduce its dividend by 21%.
November 2, 2016
25
Unsafe
Horizon Technology Finance (HRZN) slashed its dividend by 13% as the business development company experienced lower interest income due to its shrinking loan portfolio.
October 31, 2016
28
Unsafe
Ellington Financial (EFC), a mortgage REIT, lowered its dividend by 10% after bond volatility hurt the value of its investment portfolio. 
October 28, 2016
3
Very Unsafe
Westmoreland Resource Partners, LP (WMLP) needed to preserve cash after being affected by a weak thermal coal market. The highly indebted energy MLP slashed its distribution by 33% to help with its recovery.
October 28, 2016
18
Very Unsafe
North European Oil Royalty Trust (NRT) chopped its dividend by 48% in response to weak energy markets and delayed royalty payments.
October 27, 2016
34
Unsafe
StoneMor Partners (STON) had increased its distribution each year since 2005 prior to announcing a 50% cut. The stock collapsed 45% on the news. The operator or cemeteries and funeral homes was experiencing sluggish revenue growth due to the rise in popularity of cremation over traditional burials. StoneMor Partners also operated with significant financial leverage, and its payout ratio had climbed to unsustainable levels in recent years.  
October 27, 2016
33
Unsafe
Oceaneering International (OII) cut its dividend by 44% despite its healthy free cash flow generation and balance sheet. The provider of engineered services and products to the offshore energy market believed it to be prudent to cut its payout given weak oil prices.
October 27, 2016
38
Unsafe
Telefonica (TEF) needed to accelerate its debt reduction efforts in order to preserve its investment grade credit rating. The telecommunications company slashed its dividend by 25%.
October 21, 2016
4
Very Unsafe
Martin Midstream Partners (MMLP) was hurt by lower oil prices, too much financial leverage, and a need to preserve cash in light of its increasing cost of capital. The midstream energy MLP reduced its distribution by 39%.
October 12, 2016
15
Very Unsafe
Diebold (DBD) acquired Wincor Nixdorf for $1.9 billion, which negatively impacted the company’s balance sheet. The services, software, and hardware company responded by lowering its dividend by 65% to help its deleveraging efforts.
September 21, 2016
20
Very Unsafe
Viacom (VIA) chopped its dividend by 50% in order to strengthen the media company’s balance sheet, improve its liquidity and invest in opportunities to grow its core business. 
September 19, 2016
3
Very Unsafe
SeaWorld Entertainment (SEAS) suffered from a heavy debt load, a high payout ratio, and bad publicity surrounding its killer whale shows. The company responded by dropping its dividend by 52% and eliminating it completely one quarter later.
August 22, 2016
12
Very Unsafe
San Juan Basin Royalty Trust (SJT) experienced financial turmoil from lower gas prices, resulting in a 34% decrease to its dividend.
August 19, 2016
14
Very Unsafe
Mesa Royalty Trust (MTR) responded to lower gas prices by reducing its dividend by 36%. 
August 19, 2016
6
Very Unsafe
Marine Petroleum Trust (MARPS) lowered its dividend by 41% in response to declining earnings caused by lower oil prices.
August 18, 2016
5
Very Unsafe
Communications Systems (JCS), a network services and architecture company, cut its dividend by 75% as it was losing money and wanted to direct more resources towards growth initiatives.
August 9, 2016
18
Very Unsafe
Houston Wire & Cable (HWCC) responded to weak industrial demand, depressed energy markets, and its net losses by slashing its dividend by 50%.
August 9, 2016
20
Very Unsafe
Medley Capital (MCC) reduced its dividend by 27% after the business development company experienced falling net investment income.
August 9, 2016
3
Very Unsafe
Textainer Group (TGH) needed to conserve cash due to container lessor company’s heavy debt load and low prices for new and used containers. They dropped their dividend by 88%.
August 4, 2016
1
Very Unsafe
Textainer Group Holdings Limited (TGH), a container leasing company, cut its dividend by 88% as it struggled with its high debt load and weak market conditions.
August 4, 2016
23
Unsafe
Apollo Investment (AINV) suffered from high financial leverage and reduced its dividend by 25% as part of the management investment company’s restructuring strategy.
August 4, 2016
40
Unsafe
PDL BioPharma (PDLI) eliminated its dividend entirely in order to free up cash for strategic investments and provide financing for long-term growth.
August 4, 2016
13
Very Unsafe
Computer Programs (CPSI) lowered their dividend by 47% as they moved to a variable dividend policy in response to fluctuation in sales and profits and too much financial leverage.
August 4, 2016
1
Very Unsafe
Calumet Specialty Products Parnters, L.P. (CLMT), a producer of petroleum-based specialty products, eliminated its distribution to strengthen its balance sheet and preserve capital.
August 3, 2016
4
Very Unsafe
Murphy Oil (MUR), an oil and gas exploration and production company, responded to depressed commodity prices and ongoing operating losses by cutting its dividend by 29%.
August 2, 2016
6
Very Unsafe
Evolving Systems (EVOL), an application software company, suspended its dividend in order to improve its financial flexibility and fund various growth initiatives.
August 2, 2016
3
Very Unsafe
Medallion Financial (MFIN) struggled with an underperforming loan portfolio and weak liquidity. This resulted in the specialty finance company dropping its dividend by 80%.
August 1, 2016
3
Very Unsafe
Williams (WMB) reduced its dividend by 69% due to weak energy markets and a need to protect the natural gas company’s credit rating.
July 29, 2016
18
Very Unsafe
North European Oil Royalty Trust (NRT) encountered trouble with depressed energy markets and delayed royalty payments, leading the firm to reduce its dividend by 38%.
July 28, 2016
9
Very Unsafe
Potash (POT), a potash, nitrogen, and phosphate products company, lowered its dividend by 60% due to weak fertilizer markets.
July 28, 2016
18
Very Unsafe
CVR Partners (UAN) was losing money, so the indebted nitrogen fertilizer company responded by lowering its dividend by 37%
July 27, 2016
23
Unsafe
American Capital Agency (AGNC), a mortgage REIT, cut its dividend by 10% due to volatile market conditions, unfavorable interest rate fluctuations, and its high payout ratio.  
July 26, 2016
23
Unsafe
Seadrill Partners LLC (SDLP) wanted to improve its liquidity position after numerous energy customers cancelled their contracts. The offshore drilling rig company reduced its dividend by 60%.
July 19, 2016
29
Unsafe
Cross Timbers Royalty Trust (CRT) decided to drop its dividend by 11% in response to lower oil and gas volumes and its high payout ratio.
July 18, 2016
82
Very Safe
Ecology and Environment (EEI) is a micro-cap stock that had very solid financial health, but management decided it wanted to invest more for growth, freeing up additional cash for reinvestment by reducing the firm’s dividend by 17%

There was not much we could have done to flag this dividend cut ahead of time since management’s decision to reduce the dividend had almost nothing to do with the company’s actual fundamentals. However, we treat micro-caps with greater conservatism today in recognition of their generally more dynamic capital allocation policies.
July 11, 2016
9
Very Unsafe
Plains All American Pipeline, L.P. (PAA), an energy infrastructure and natural gas company, slashed its distribution by 21% to preserve capital after being hurt by lower oil prices.
July 11, 2016
7
Very Unsafe
Plains GP Holdings, L.P. (PAGP) was hurt by lower oil prices, leading the midstream energy infrastructure company to lower its distribution by 11% in order to preserve capital.
June 17, 2016
8
Very Unsafe
Daktronics (DAKT), a company that manufactures electronic entertainment technology, announced a 40% decrease to its regular dividend in order to add a special, less predictable dividend going forward.
June 9, 2016
23
Unsafe
Capstead Mortgage (CMO), a mortgage REIT, struggled with volatile investment income, a high payout ratio, and substantial debt. As a result, management cut the firm’s dividend by 12%
June 9, 2016
2
Very Unsafe
Universal Technical Institute (UTI), a provider of automotive technician training, cut its dividend entirely. The education company was losing money. 
June 8, 2016
15
Very Unsafe
CYS Investments (CYS) lowered its dividend by 4% as the mortgage REIT combated volatile interest rates and a high payout ratio.
June 8, 2016
5
Very Unsafe
RF Industries (RFIL), a manufacturer of electronic components and cabling solutions, chopped its dividend by 71% as the company was losing money and needed to preserve capital. 
June 3, 2016
27
Unsafe
Sabine Royalty Trust (SBR) slashed its dividend by 38% in response to lower oil and gas volumes and prices. 
May 20, 2016
3
Very Unsafe
Marine Petroleum Trust (MARPS) lowered its dividend by 18% in response to damage caused by lower oil prices.
May 20, 2016
17
Very Unsafe
San Juan Basin Royalty Trust (SJT) experienced financial turmoil from lower gas prices, resulting in a 32% decrease to its dividend.
May 20, 2016
26
Unsafe
Cross Timbers Royalty (CRT) was hurt by lower oil prices and its high payout ratio, resulting in a 13% decrease to its dividend.
May 13, 2016
19
Very Unsafe
United-Guardian (UG), a manufacturer of pharmaceuticals, cut its dividend by 30% after experiencing marketing problems in China which caused sales to drop nearly 50%.
May 9, 2016
9
Very Unsafe
OCI Partners LP (OCIP) suffered as prices of methanol, ammonia, and natural gas dropped. The indebted and capital-intensive methanol and ammonia producer lowered its dividend by 81%
May 9, 2016
3
Very Unsafe
TheStreet (TST) eliminated its dividend entirely in response to the financial news and information provider’s operating losses and need to restructure the company.
May 4, 2016
1
Very Unsafe
Legacy Reserves LP (LGCY), an oil and natural gas development company, suspended its dividend as it dealt with depressed energy prices. The firm needed to strengthen its indebted balance sheet and preserve capital. 
April 27, 2016
10
Very Unsafe
Carlyle Group (CG) responded to challenging market conditions by issuing a 10% reduction to the asset management company’s dividend.
April 27, 2016
2
Very Unsafe
EV Energy Partners, LP (EVEP) eliminated its dividend after the oil and gas company was challenged by ongoing net losses, volatile energy markets, and dangerously high financial leverage. The firm filed for bankruptcy two years later.
April 26, 2016
2
Very Unsafe
Memorial Production (MEMP) experienced weak industry conditions that forced the indebted energy MLP to reduce its distribution by 70%.
April 26, 2016
26
Unsafe
Alliance Resource Partners, L.P. (ARLP) lowered its distribution by 35% as it attempted to recover from a weak coal market and too much debt on its balance sheet.
April 26, 2016
33
Unsafe
Alliance Holdings GP, L.P. (AHGP) cut its distribution by 41% as depressed coal prices lowered its distributable cash flow and further strained its indebted balance sheet. 
April 25, 2016
1
Very Unsafe
Vale (VALE) eliminated its dividend entirely to preserve cash after a prolonged slump in metal prices pressured its cash flow and credit rating. 
April 21, 2016
4
Very Unsafe
NGL Energy Partners, LP (NGL) slashed its distribution by 39% in response to low commodity prices and its need to conserve cash due to the midstream energy MLP’s high financial leverage and payout ratio.
April 11, 2016
5
Very Unsafe
National Oilwell Varco (NOV) cut its dividend by 89% to preserve cash flow and keep its balance sheet healthy in response to plunging oil prices. 
February 29, 2016
0
Very Unsafe
CONSOL Energy (CNX) responded to weak natural gas and coal prices, which caused the indebted company to lose money, by suspending its dividend.
February 25, 2016
29
Unsafe
Goldcorp (GG) experienced weak production levels and a needed to maintain a strong balance sheet, resulting in the gold production company lowering its dividend by 67%. Goldcorp’s stock dropped more than 10% on the news. 
February 23, 2016
5
Very Unsafe
BHP Billiton (BHP) was hurt by a rout in commodity markets that sent the diversified miner’s earnings tumbling. To protect its solid credit rating, BHP slashed its dividend by 87%, marking its first reduction since 1988.
February 16, 2016
1
Very Unsafe
Devon Energy (DVN) cut its dividend by 75% to protect the oil and gas producer’s balance sheet during challenging energy markets.
February 9, 2016
1
Very Unsafe
Anadarko Petroleum (APC) needed to preserve cash during while energy markets remained weak. The oil and natural gas company lowered its dividend by 81%.
February 4, 2016
17
Very Unsafe
ConocoPhilips (COP) was burning through cash due to the oil price cash. Due to its need to protect its balance sheet and preserve cash, the oil and gas exploration and production company cut its dividend by 66%, its first reduction in more than 25 years.
January 26, 2016
3
Very Unsafe
Noble Energy (NBL) suffered from weak energy markets and a needed to preserve cash. The oil and gas producer therefore lowered its dividend by 44%
December 8, 2015
8
Very Unsafe
Kinder Morgan (KMI), an energy infrastructure giant, slashed its dividend by 75% to preserve cash. The pipeline company’s dividend cut gave it the capital it needed to fund its expansion plans while allowing it to maintain an investment grade credit rating. Companies that depend on raising capital from debt and equity markets to fund their dividends and growth projects can be forced to make difficult decisions if their access to capital becomes strained.