General Electric announced it raised the company’s quarterly dividend by 12%, or $0.02 per outstanding share of the company’s common stock, to $0.19 per outstanding share.
In addition, GE also increased the existing share-repurchase authorization by $10 billion and extended the repurchase plan through 2015, which otherwise would have expired on Dec. 31, 2013. As of the end of the third quarter of 2012, the plan had approximately $4.9 billion in remaining authorization.
According to a related news release posted on 24/7 Wall St., GE was able to make these moves following an agreement with the Fed that allowed GE to gain access to a $78 billion pile of cash its GE Capital finance unit. So far this year, GE Capital has returned $5.5 billion to its parent through the end of the third quarter.
“We are pleased to increase GE’s quarterly dividend for the fifth time in three years,” GE chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt said. “In addition to investing in long-term growth, returning cash to our shareholders remains a top priority. Coupled with our strong operational outlook, today’s announcement underscores our balanced and disciplined approach to capital allocation.”