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Southwest Airlines Raises Dividend by 12.5%, Approves $2B Buyback

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Southwest Airlines Raises Dividend by 12.5%, Approves $2B Buyback

Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) announced its board of directors have increased the company's quarterly dividend by 12.5 percent and authorized a new $2 billion share repurchase program.

The board increased quarterly dividend from 16 cents per share to 18 cents per share, which amounts to approximately $391 million, and an approximate 1.4 percent dividend yield. The dividend will be paid on June 26, 2019.

Gary Kelly, chairman and CEO of Southwest said, "Since 2010, we have returned more than $11 billion of value to shareholders through share repurchases and dividends. Our long-term financial goals remain unchanged: maintain a strong balance sheet, investment-grade credit ratings, and ample liquidity; generate robust operating and free cash flows; grow earnings, margins, and capital returns; and maintain healthy Shareholder returns."

Through March 31, Southwest Airlines has repurchased approximately 21.7 million shares under the May 2018 $2 billion share repurchase authorization.

Southwest Airlines traded higher on the news, with the stock up to $51.99 per share at time of publication.

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