Anyone buying a stock solely because they anticipate a split is making a mistake.
Shares outstanding have nothing to do with the dividend payout ratio as one poster foolishly implied.
XOM has a very good record of paying dividends and increasing their dividend per share. They have made these dividend increases per share through actual payout of more dividend dollars and by reducing their outstanding share count through stock buybacks. Over the last ten years they have raised their dividend per share on average 9.4% annually. The lowest raise was 4.8% and the highest 17.8%.
They have not had a stock split since 2001.
Their payout ratio has had very wild swings that follow their earnings. For example their best year through 2012 was 2008 and they made $45.2 billion dollars and increased their dollars paid in dividends but their dividend payout ration was the lowest of the decade that year at 17.7%.
There is absolutely no reason for an investor to expect after a stock split XOM to increase the dollars in dividends they pay anymore than they normally would. In other words what ever dividend per share you expect to receive prior to a split, expect half of that after a 2:1 split.
XOM is a very good blue chip and there are lots of reasons to buy it--anticipating a stock split is not one of them. Anticipating a stock split and expecting the dividends per share to remain the same or to be something more than 1/2 of the previous dividend per share plus their normal increase is certainly not one of them.
Some good info here. LINK
Here is chart illustrating how the payout ratio swings wildly depending on earnings. Image: http://static.cdn-seekingalpha.com/uploads/2013/9/26/989695-1380225406355674-Dividend-Growth-Machine.png
Here is their SPLIT ADJUSTED dividend history. You can see that adjusted for the split in 2001 the dividend followed the historical dividend increase policy. Some might have assumed from previous posts on this thread the dividends per share were held constant in previous splits. Had they been held constant the per share dividend would have doubled in 2001. LINK
Their split adjusted dividend in 2001 was 90 cents and in 2002 was 92 cents--actually lower than the increase of 9.4% of late.
This post was edited on 12/29 at 1:09 pm