Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Washington Mutual: Another Quarterly Dividend Increase

Today Washington Mutual (WM) announced earnings and a quarterly dividend increase. Earnings for the 4th quarter of 2006 totaled $1.06 billion versus $865 million in the same quarter of 2005. Of note though, the 4Q earnings included an after tax gain of $415 million as a result of Wamu selling WM Advisors, Inc.

From a dividend perspective, WM announced an increase in the 1Q 2007 dividend to 54 cents per share versus 50 cents in the same quarter last year. This recent dividend announcement represents a 1 cent increase over the 4th quarter 2006 dividend. WM has increased its dividend by a penny in each quarter since the 3rd quarter of 2000. The payout ratio based on 2007 estimated earnings is approximately 53%. The 5-Year average payout ratio for Wamu is 46%.

(click on charts for larger images)

Historical Dividend Yield

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