Despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, it's been a great year for Wingstop (WING -1.00%) and the company is passing the stellar results on to shareholders. On Monday, the company announced a special dividend of $5 per share. If you own the stock on Nov. 20, you'll receive your $5 dividend payment on Dec. 3. The dividend yield for the special dividend is over 4%.
Wingstop has done this before. One year after going public, it paid a special dividend of $2.76 per share. Then in 2018, it paid two special dividends: The first was for $3.02 per share and the second was for $3.05 per share. These have been paid without any disruption to the ongoing quarterly dividend, which has been paid since it was started in mid-2017. The company has also annually raised the quarterly dividend.
While many restaurants have struggled due to coronavirus-inspired physical-distancing guidelines, Wingstop has been an exception given the company's high off-premise (to-go) sales. Its sales have soared all year, and the third quarter was no exception. With the special-dividend announcement, the company also released Q3 results showing an outstanding 25% increase to domestic same-store sales. These strong results provided management with the confidence to reward shareholders with the special dividend.
Wingstop isn't often thought of as a top dividend stock. That's because its quarterly payout yields less than 1%, which is considered low-yield. However, investors who snagged shares during the initial public offering (IPO) in 2015 are likely very happy. After the company pays this upcoming $5 dividend, it will have paid over $15 in dividends since going public. For perspective, the IPO was priced at $19 per share.