The impact of a scrip dividend on an equity forward
We consider an equity forward contract on a stock which pays a dividend during the forward’s lifetime. Furthermore, the stock owner is assumed to have the right to opt for either cash or scrip dividend. In the latter case, the stock owner receives the dividend in the form of additional shares and the number of shares to be received depends on the average stock price in a certain time period. The decision between scrip or cash must be made by the stock owner at some time point during the averaging period. Within a Black-Scholes-type setup we derive a closed formula for the fair strike price of such an equity forward contract in dependence on the stock volatility parameter. It is demonstrated how the optionality for the stock owner can have a non-negligible value which lowers the forward equity strike.