S&P raises dividend rate on the S&P 500

Feb. 15, 2005 at 1:56 PM

NEW YORK, Feb. 15 (UPI) -- Standard & Poor's of New York said Tuesday it raised the indicated dividend rate on the S&P 500 from $20.35 to $21.10.

Standard & Poor's is estimating cash dividends will set another record in 2005, paying out $21.80 per share compared with $19.44 for 2004.

The 12.2 percent increase translates into a $203 billion aggregate payment, compared with a payment of $181 billion in 2004.

Within the S&P 500, 74 issues have increased their rate this year compared with 52 in 2004 and 41 in 2003.

"For 2005, Standard & Poor's sees a continuation in both dividend increases and initiations," says Howard Silverblatt, equity market analyst, Standard & Poor's. "At the end of 2002, only 351 issues in the S&P 500 paid a dividend. We now have 378 issues in the S&P 500 paying dividends, with additional constituents having significant ability to increase and initiate."

Standard & Poor's is a division of the McGraw-Hill Companies.

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