Definition of Payout ratio
Stock terms & definitions > Payout ratio
Payout ratio of Facebook, Inc.
The payout ratio is calculated by dividing the dividends paid out by the net earnings for a certain period. It is usually expressed as a percentage. The part of the earnings not paid to investors is left for investment to provide for future earnings growth. Investors seeking high current income and limited capital growth prefer companies with high payout ratio. However investors seeking capital growth may prefer lower payout ratio because capital gains are taxed at a lower rate. High growth firms in early life generally have low or zero payout ratios. As they mature, they tend to return more of the earnings back to investors.