It can be assumed to be “equal” if all other things would be equal. Which is quite a stretch to assume.
There are many of long-running, solid and stable companies that have been paying dividends for ages. Many of them have in face been growing dividend payouts for long times. Nestlé, Unilever… Procter & Gamble has raised their dividends each year for 63 years, I read the other day. They have certainly proven great investments. And as I said: Dividends (usually) come out of profits, not losses.
On the other hand, there are tons of non-dividend paying companies that aren’t profitable, that aren’t stable, that aren’t profitable, that don’t survive, let alone grow their businesses over the long term.
Not every non dividend payer is an Alphabet/Google. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if for every Google there are multiple defunct/broke companies that haven’t paid much or any dividend during their lifetime.
Avoiding dividends “as much as possible” is, I believe, a pretty surefire way to load up on bad eggs and crappy investments (if based on equity (ETFs)) in your portfolio - and in the end, to me, just not good investment advice.
Minimising dividend taxation should rightly be one consideration. But it should be a means to an end (maximising returns from good investments), not an end in itself (minimising dividend taxation on dividends).
But neither should maximising dividends be the goal. Companies - or equity funds - with dividend yields that seem too good to be true should considered carefully. Because if it sounds too good to be true, it often is - and there will be a catch. That’s why “high dividend” yield stocks or a selection of such that goes “only” by the dividend criterion might a questionable investment.
I’d rather pay taxes on a good investment - than avoid them on a crap one.