Unlike bonds, preferred stock is not debt that must be repaid. Income from preferred stock gets preferential tax treatment, since qualified dividends may be taxed at a lower rate than bond interest. Preferred stock dividends are not guaranteed, unlike most bond interest payments.
Can preferred stocks replace bonds?
Their yields might look tempting, but they come with a few drawbacks. It’s easy to see the appeal of preferred stocks as a potential bond substitute.
How is preferred stock different than bonds or common stock?
The main difference between preferred and common stock is that preferred stock gives no voting rights to shareholders while common stock does. Preferred shareholders have priority over a company’s income, meaning they are paid dividends before common shareholders.
Why would a company issue preferred stock instead of bonds?
Companies that offer preferred shares instead of issuing bonds can accomplish a lower debt-to-equity ratio. That allows them to gain significantly more future financing from new investors. A company’s debt-to-equity ratio is one of the most common metrics used to analyze the financial stability of a business.
Which are better buys bonds or preferred stock?
Investors like preferred stock because this type of stock often pays a higher yield than the company’s bonds. So if preferred stocks pay a higher dividend yield, why wouldn’t investors always buy them instead of bonds? The short answer is that preferred stock is riskier than bonds.
Why do banks issue preferred stock?
Preferred securities count toward regulatory capital requirements so banks issue preferreds to help them maintain their required capital ratio. Preferreds can also offer issuers structural benefits, lower capital costs and improved agency ratings.
What are the risks of preferred stock?
A big risk of owning preferred stocks is that shares are often sensitive to changes in interest rates. Because preferred stocks often pay dividends at average fixed rates in the 5% to 6% range, share prices typically fall as prevailing interest rates increase.
Can you sell preferred stock?
The company that sold you the preferred stock can usually, but not always, force you to sell the shares back at a predetermined price. Companies might choose to call preferred stock if the interest rates they’re paying are significantly higher than the going rate in the market.