Now that we have set out the basics, we can see how they apply to companies by looking at a dividend paying company over the course of 12 months.
FirstGroup runs buses and trains in the UK and also has operations in the United States, where it owns the famous Greyhound coaches and also operates services such as school buses under contract. Its financial year runs from 1 April to 31 March.
To put the situation in context, FirstGroup had issued its full-year results for 2008-9 on 13 May 2009. It had declared a final dividend of 12.7p, making a total of 18.75p for the year.
The final dividend was paid on 21 August 2009 to shareholders on the register on 17 July 2009. It cost £61.1 million, ...