This is a general dividend information page which contains information about standard cash and scrip dividends as well as the Santander Dividend Re-investment Plan (DRIP).
What are dividends?
Dividends represent a share of a company’s profits. Dividend payments are distributed to shareholders in respect of the number of shares held; the higher the number of shares held, the higher the dividend payment received.
When does Santander pay my dividends?
Santander generally pays dividends four times a year. These are usually in February, May, August and November. Profits made in the year are distributed from August of the same year with the final dividend paid in May of the following year.
View the Financial Calendar for dividend payment dates here.
What is Santander’s current dividend policy?
Traditionally, Santander has paid standard cash dividends, but during the last few years Santander has offered its shareholders the Santander Scrip Dividend Scheme.
However, in January 2015, Santander announced a change in its dividend policy with a return to paying traditional cash dividends. This is due to improved economic growth and changes to tax regulations in Spain which reduces the advantages of scrip dividends.
Dividends from 2014’s earnings are being paid in four payments, three of them as standard cash dividends and one of them through the Scrip Dividend Scheme.
With the new dividend policy, dividends will be paid in line with the growth in earnings, with a target payout ratio of 30-40% of recurring profits made in 2015, instead of the current 20% relating to profits made in 2014.
Click here for more information about Santander’s dividend policy and payments for 2015.
What is the difference between standard cash dividends and the Scrip Dividend Scheme?
A standard cash dividend is a fixed amount of cash paid to shareholders for each share held. This cash is paid out of annual profits. A history of past Santander standard cash dividends can be found here.
Scrip dividends offer shareholders the opportunity to receive new shares, or alternatively, to receive a cash amount. The Santander Scrip Dividend Scheme is approved by shareholders at the Annual General Meeting. Santander notifies shareholders in advance of a scrip dividend being offered. Further information about the Scrip Dividend Scheme can be found here.
What are the tax implications of receiving a Santander cash or scrip dividend?
Click here for more information about your tax obligations as a UK Santander shareholder.
How can I receive Santander shares when a dividend is paid?
When a scrip dividend is offered, you will receive shares by default if you have not previously registered for the cash option. To change your scrip dividend payment option, click here.
When Santander pays shareholders a standard cash dividend, you can use your cash dividend to buy more shares by joining the Santander Dividend Re-investment Plan (DRIP). For more information about the DRIP, click here.
When will I receive my standard cash dividend?
Santander usually pays dividends (standard cash or scrip) on the 1 st day of February, May, August and November. If your dividend is paid directly into your bank account, you will receive a standard cash dividend approximately 10 days later. If your dividend is paid by cheque, you will receive the payment approximately three weeks later.
Dividend funds are transferred from Spain to the UK and then converted from euro to sterling before being allocated to individual shareholders which causes a deferred payment for UK shareholders.
View the Financial Calendar for details of confirmed dividend payments here.
When will I receive my scrip dividend payment?
Scrip dividends, paid as cash or new shares, are distributed on a different schedule to the standard cash dividend.
The payment timetable for the next confirmed scrip dividend payment can be found here.
View the Financial Calendar for details of confirmed dividend payments here.
How can I receive cash dividends directly into my bank account?
You can instruct payment of your dividends directly into your bank account by postal instruction or online. For more information about how to instruct this and administer your shareholding through Shareview, click here.
Direct payment into a bank account is an easy and secure way to receive your dividends; administration fees are charged on the reissue of outstanding or lost cheques.
Could you defer your mortgage payments?
Last updated on 15 May 2009
Homeowners struggling to meet their mortgage debt could be offered lower monthly repayments as part of a new government and banking initiative.
The Homeowners Mortgage Support (HMS) scheme is being offered by 10 banking groups and building societies, with other institutions lined up to join the scheme soon.
The scheme means that borrowers who suffer a temporary loss of income could cut their mortgage interest payments by up to 70% for up to two years.
The roll-out of HMS comes amid rising repossessions and levels of arrears among borrowers, with many struggling to cope after losing their jobs. The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) currently forecasts 75,000 repossessions this year with as many as 500,000 mortgages in arrears of three months or more by the end of 2009.
Margaret Beckett, the housing minister, says: "We know that many families are worried about how to pay the mortgage right now, and we're determined to ensure there is real help available for them. The clear message to borrowers is to contact your lender straight away if you're concerned about how to pay the mortgage as often a solution can be found."
The government is keen to stress that HMS is not a payment holiday and does not allow people to dodge their debt. Instead, it provides borrowers with breathing space, with interest payments deferred for up to two years.
Michael Coogan, director general of the CML, says that, for lenders, repossession is a last resort.
However, he admits that it is not yet clear what impact the HMS scheme will have: “It is likely to be some months before it will be possible to assess the impact of the various industry and government measures. The CML expects to be able to update its forecasts on arrears and repossessions, taking into account these measures as well as the prospects for employment and the wider economy, over the summer.”
Lloyds Banking Group (which includes Halifax and Bank of Scotland), Northern Rock, the Royal Bank of Scotland (which includes NatWest and Ulster Bank), Bradford & Bingley, Cumberland Building Society, and the National Australia Bank Group (which includes Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank) have all confirmed their full participation in the scheme and will offer HMS from today (21 April).
Barclays (including First Plus), HSBC, Nationwide and Santander (including Abbey and Alliance & Leicester) have all confirmed they will offer comparable arrangements to HMS to their customers, but will not take up the government scheme.
This means that customers should receive a similar level of support as people with banks offering HMS.
Bank of Ireland (which includes Bristol & West), GMAC, GE Money, Kensington Mortgages, the Post Office and Standard Life Bank, meanwhile, have confirmed they will offer customers HMS as soon as possible.
“Lenders fully recognise their responsibility to keep people in their homes where repossession can be avoided,” says Coogan. “The fact that some lenders are utilising the new scheme and others are not indicates simply a difference in their approach to forbearance, not in their commitment to it."
* Your lender must be a participant in the HMS scheme (see above).
* You have suffered a temporary loss of income. For example, you or your partner may have been made redundant, have had your hours cut or are no longer able to work overtime.
* You have no insurance policies in place protecting your mortgage payments.
* If you own more than one home.
* If your income is unlikely to return to its previous level. For example, you might have a long-term illness preventing your from working.
* If you have insurance in place that protects your mortgage payments.
* If you would still be unable to keep up with repayments even if they were reduced.
* If you are claiming Jobseeker's Allowance - in this case you can claim support for mortgage interest instead.
If you qualify for HMS, then the first step is to contact your lender and explain your situation clearly. In most cases you will then be referred to an independent money adviser, such as the Consumer Credit Counselling Service, to discuss your situation further. It will also explain how HMS works, outlining the risks as well as the benefits.
If you and your lender agree that you are suitable for HMS then you can expect the following help:
* Renegotiated monthly repayments. You and your lender will agree how much you can realistically afford to pay back each month. Under the scheme, you must be able to pay at least 30% of the interest due on your mortgage each month.
* After 12 months, you are required to meet with your lender to review your circumstances.
* You will benefit from lower monthly repayments for up to two years or until your situation changes. If your income does change during this time, then you must inform your lender. If your income returns to previous levels you are likely to no longer be offered HMS.
* After two years (or if your situation changes) the interest payments you have deferred over the period will be added to your mortgage balance. You will, therefore, have to repay back this money, with interest. How you pay this back, and over what timeframe, will be decided between you and your lender. However, bear in mind that your monthly repayments are likely to increase.
While HMS allows you reduced monthly mortgage interest payments for up to two years, this scheme does not allow you to avoid paying this money back altogether. After two years (or if you are no longer eligible for HMS) you will be required to pay back the interest payments missed.
Your lender will add this to your total mortgage debt, and this will attract interest as your overall mortgage rate. It will be up to your lender how your monthly payments will change as a result.
Teresa Perchard, director of public policy at Citizens Advice, warns homeowners to explore other options before HMS because the risk of delaying their debt might not be right for them.
“It is vital that anyone who has experienced a reduction in income speak to their lender straight away,” she adds. “All lenders should provide an understanding and constructive response and help their customers come to a manageable solution, taking into account the customers circumstances and ability to repay their debts and this scheme requires borrowers to have stuck to an agreed repayment plan before being considered.”