This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

Ex-Dividend Date and Record Date Explained

When do you have to purchase a stock in order to get the dividend? -- S.J.

Gregg Greenberg: There are two dates to keep in mind when determining whether you are entitled to a company's stock or cash dividend: the "record date" and the "ex-dividend date."

The record date is when you must be on the company's books as a shareholder to receive the dividend. After the company establishes the record date, the ex-dividend date is normally set for two business days before the record date. (Remember, that's business, not calendar, days.)

If you purchase a stock on or after its ex-dividend date, you will be out of luck when it comes to the dividend payment. So don't dawdle, because if you do the seller will pocket the dividend instead of you.

Also, if a company pays out 20 cents a share every quarter, all other things being equal, the shares would likely open down about 20 cents lower on the ex-dividend date because buyers that day will not receive the income.

The one wrinkle in all of this is that the dividend itself is usually not paid out until two to four weeks after the ex-dividend date. Investors can sell shares any time on or after the ex-dividend date and still receive the payout, even though the stock is no longer in their account.


I own a few stocks that have not participated in the recent market rally. I'm pretty sure they are good companies and good stocks. Should I be concerned? -- T.B.

Hey, it's hard not to be concerned when your stocks don't rally along with the rest of a bull market. It's kind of like going to a casino and watching everybody else have a great time as they rake in the chips, while you just sit there breaking even.

But unlike betting in a casino, where the longer you stay at the tables the more likely you are to lose your cash, investing in good stocks for the long term will more often than not pay off handsomely. P/> If you see your stocks are not joining in the market's reindeer games, the first thing you should do is find out why. Maybe your beloved stock is not as good as you originally believed. So the first step is to review its financials and do some homework.

Once you've done your due diligence and feel even more confident that you are right and the market is wrong, then you may consider buying some more shares at these depressed prices. If your stock is as good as you believe, then you will have a lot more shares to profit from when it finally comes around.

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!

Markets

DOW 17,804.80 +26.65 0.15%
S&P 500 2,070.65 +9.42 0.46%
NASDAQ 4,765.38 +16.9840 0.36%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs