Shopping Centres Australasia (ASX:SCP) share price edges lower. Here’s why

The company’s shares are backtracking today. What’s going on?

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The Shopping Cntrs Austrls Prprty Gp Re Ltd (ASX: SCP) share price is falling on Thursday afternoon. This comes as the retail property group shares are trading ex-dividend.

At the time of writing, the Shopping Centres Australasia share price is down 1.31% to $3.01 apiece. Despite the drop, it’s worth noting the company’s shares are up 7% in a month.

Why are Shopping Centres Australasia shares falling today? 

With the company’s half-year 2021 distribution recently announced, investors are eyeing Shopping Centres Australasia shares as they go ex-dividend today.

Typically, one business day before the record date, the ex-dividend date, is when investors must have purchased shares. If the investor does not buy Shopping Centres Australasia shares before this date, the dividend will go to the seller.

Historically, when a company reaches its ex-dividend day, its shares tend to fall in proportion to the dividend paid out. This is because investors tend to sell off the company’s shares after securing the dividend.

What does this mean for shareholders?

For those eligible for the Shopping Centres Australasia dividend, shareholders will receive a payment of 7.2 cents per share on 31 January 2022. The dividend is not franked, which means investors will miss out on the imputed tax credits.

Investors who elect for the dividend reinvestment plan (DRP) will see a number of shares added to their portfolio. This will be based on a volume-weighted average price over 10 business days up until the record date (18 January). The DRP discount rate that will be applied is 1%.

The last election date for shareholders to opt-in to the DRP is 4 January 2022.

Is Shopping Centres Australasia a buy?

Following the company’s financial scorecard earlier this month, American multinational investment bank Jefferies weighed in on the Shopping Centres Australasia share price.

Its analysts upgraded the outlook to “buy” from “hold”, and raised the 12-month price target by 5.3% to $3.16.

Based on the current share price, this implies an upside of about 5% for investors.

Shopping Centres Australasia share price summary

Since the beginning of 2021, the Shopping Centres Australasia share price has gained 16% on the back of positive investor sentiment. The S&P/ASX 200 Real Estate Index (ASX: XRE) is up around 17% over the same timeframe.

Shopping Centres Australasia commands a market capitalisation of roughly $3.33 billion, with approximately 1.11 billion shares outstanding.

Should you invest $1,000 in Shopping Centres Australasia right now?

Before you consider Shopping Centres Australasia, you'll want to hear this.

Motley Fool Investing expert Scott Phillips just revealed what he believes are the 5 best stocks for investors to buy right now... and Shopping Centres Australasia wasn't one of them.

The online investing service he’s run for over a decade, Motley Fool Share Advisor, has provided thousands of paying members with stock picks that have doubled, tripled or even more.* And right now, Scott thinks there are 5 stocks that are better buys.

*Returns as of January 13th 2022

Motley Fool contributor Aaron Teboneras has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns and has recommended Shopping Centres Australasia Property Group. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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