Molson Coors raises dividend by 40%

Molson Coors raises dividend by 40%

Molson Coors has declared a 40% increase in its quarterly dividend, despite reporting a 35% drop in net profits in the final three months of 2010.

Molson Coors said yesterday (17 February) that it will pay a dividend of US$0.28 per share on its class A and B common stock. The dividend will be paid on 15 March to shareholders registered by 28 February.

The payment represents a 40% rise on the corresponding quarterly dividend of last year and comes in spite of a 35% slump in fourth quarter profits, to $123.6m.

Most of the fall was attributable to a higher tax charge than in the preceding year, however. "We achieved solid growth in pretax income and free cash flow, despite continued input cost inflation and weak industry volume,” said Molson's CEO, Peter Swinburn, following publication of the brewer's full-year results last week. Net profits for 2010 slipped by 6%.