CHICAGO, Dec. 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- CME Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CME) today declared its annual variable dividend, amounting to $1.30 per share. The dividend is payable December 28, 2012, to shareholders of record December 17, 2012. When CME Group adopted its annual variable dividend structure in February 2012, the intention was to determine the amount after the end of each year, with the level to increase or decrease from year to year based on operating results, potential investment activity, and other forms of capital return including regular dividends and share buybacks during the prior year. Because of uncertainty regarding future taxation of dividends, CME Group's board of directors has accelerated the timing of this dividend – which would have been paid in first-quarter 2013 – into the fourth quarter of 2012 in order to maximize the after-tax value to its shareholders.
CME Group paid its first annual variable dividend in March 2012, in the amount of $0.60 per share on a post-split basis.
The accelerated annual variable dividend is supplemental to the regular quarterly dividend of $0.45 per share payable December 26, 2012, to shareholders of record December 10, 2012. In total during calendar year 2012, considering four quarterly dividends and two variable annual dividends, the company will have returned $3.69 per share to shareholders.
As the world's leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, CME Group ( www.cmegroup.com) is where the world comes to manage risk. CME Group exchanges offer the widest range of global benchmark products across all major asset classes, including futures and options based on interest rates, equity indexes, foreign exchange, energy, agricultural commodities, metals, weather and real estate. CME Group brings buyers and sellers together through its CME Globex ® electronic trading platform and its trading facilities in New York and Chicago. CME Group also operates CME Clearing, one of the world's leading central counterparty clearing providers, which offers clearing and settlement services across asset classes for exchange-traded contracts and over-the-counter derivatives transactions. These products and services ensure that businesses everywhere can substantially mitigate counterparty credit risk.CME Group is a trademark of CME Group Inc. The Globe Logo, CME, Globex and Chicago Mercantile Exchange are trademarks of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. CBOT and the Chicago Board of Trade are trademarks of the Board of Trade of the City of Chicago, Inc. NYMEX, New York Mercantile Exchange and ClearPort are registered trademarks of New York Mercantile Exchange, Inc. COMEX is a trademark of Commodity Exchange, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Further information about CME Group (NASDAQ: CME) and its products can be found at www.cmegroup.com. Statements in this press release that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict. Therefore, actual outcomes and results may differ materially from what is expressed or implied in any forward-looking statements. Among the factors that might affect our performance are: increasing competition by foreign and domestic entities, including increased competition from new entrants into our markets and consolidation of existing entities; our ability to keep pace with rapid technological developments, including our ability to complete the development, implementation and maintenance of the enhanced functionality required by our customers; our ability to continue introducing competitive new products and services on a timely, cost-effective basis, including through our electronic trading capabilities, and our ability to maintain the competitiveness of our existing products and services, including our ability to provide effective services to the over-the-counter market; our ability to adjust our fixed costs and expenses if our revenues decline; our ability to generate revenues from our processing services; our ability to maintain existing customers, develop strategic relationships and attract new customers; our ability to expand and offer our products outside the United States; changes in domestic and non-U.S. regulations; changes in government policy, including policies relating to common or directed clearing and changes as a result of legislation stemming from the implementation of the Dodd-Frank Act; the costs associated with protecting our intellectual property rights and our ability to operate our business without violating the intellectual property rights of others; our ability to generate revenue from our market data that may be reduced or eliminated by the growth of electronic trading, the state of the overall economy or declines in subscriptions; changes in our rate per contract due to shifts in the mix of the products traded, the trading venue and the mix of customers (whether the customer receives member or non-member fees or participates in one of our various incentive programs) and the impact of our tiered pricing structure; the ability of our financial safeguards package to adequately protect us from the credit risks of clearing members; the ability of our compliance and risk management methods to effectively monitor and manage our risks, including our ability to prevent errors and misconduct and protect our infrastructure against security breaches and misappropriation of our intellectual property assets; changes in price levels and volatility in the derivatives markets and in underlying fixed income, equity, foreign exchange, interest rate and commodities markets; economic, political and market conditions, including the volatility of the capital and credit markets and the impact of economic conditions on the trading activity of our current and potential customers stemming from the financial crisis that began in 2008 and any other future crises; our ability to accommodate increases in trading volume and order transaction traffic without failure or degradation of performance of our trading and clearing systems; our ability to execute our growth strategy and maintain our growth effectively; our ability to manage the risks and control the costs associated with our acquisition, investment and alliance strategy; our ability to continue to generate funds and/or manage our indebtedness to allow us to continue to invest in our business; industry and customer consolidation; decreases in trading and clearing activity; the imposition of a transaction tax or user fee on futures and options on futures transactions and/or the repeal of the 60/40 tax treatment of such transactions; the unfavorable resolution of material legal proceedings and the seasonality of the futures business. More detailed information about factors that may affect our performance may be found in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our most recent periodic reports filed on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q, which are available in the Investor Relations section of the CME Group Web site. We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. CME-G