The Board of Directors of ACE Limited (NYSE: ACE) today declared a quarterly dividend equal to $0.49 payable on January 7, 2013, to shareholders of record at the close of business on December 17, 2012, subject to a required filing with the Swiss Commercial Register. Dividend payments will be made in United States dollars (USD) by the company’s transfer agent.
The company’s par value, currently 29.34 Swiss francs (CHF) per share, will be reduced in connection with the dividend on the record date by the CHF equivalent of $0.49 per share based on the USD/CHF rate published on December 11, 2012. This will be the third of four par value reduction installments as approved by the company’s shareholders on May 16, 2012.
In addition, the Board of Directors has extended for one year the company’s current stock repurchase program, which was scheduled to expire on December 31, 2012. Under the Board’s August 31, 2011, authorization, $461 million remains available for repurchases through December 31, 2013. The purpose of the repurchase program is to offset, in whole or in part, potential dilution from the exercise of stock options and granting of restricted stock under ACE’s equity-based incentive plans. Subject to market conditions and a variety of timing considerations, the company believes it is appropriate to repurchase shares from time to time to offset shareholder dilution attributable to equity grants. This repurchase authorization may be implemented in the open market, in privately negotiated transactions, block trades, accelerated repurchases and/or through option or other forward transactions.
The ACE Group is one of the world’s largest multiline property and casualty insurers. With operations in 53 countries, ACE provides commercial and personal property and casualty insurance, personal accident and supplemental health insurance, reinsurance and life insurance to a diverse group of clients. ACE Limited, the parent company of the ACE Group, is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: ACE) and is a component of the S&P 500 index. Additional information can be found at: www.acegroup.com.Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements : Forward-looking statements made in this press release, such as statements regarding the dividend payment, record date and potential repurchases of shares, reflect the company’s current views with respect to future events and are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements involve risks and uncertainties, which may cause actual results to differ materially from as set forth in these statements. For example, the company’s forward-looking statements about its dividend payment could be affected by extraordinary currency fluctuations leading to reduction in the USD value of the dividend pursuant to the dividend cap approved by the company’s shareholders and described in the company’s proxy statement dated April 4, 2012; or delay in filing or acceptance of filing of the necessary amendments to the company’s Articles of Association which makes the record date official. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date on which they are made.
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