WAYNE, N.J., Nov. 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Valley National Bancorp ( NYSE:VLY)("Valley"), the holding company for Valley National Bank, announced today that a common stock cash dividend of $0.11 per share will be paid January 2, 2014 to shareholders of record on December 13, 2013. The dividend amount per share decreased $0.0525 from the previous quarterly cash dividend of $0.1625.
"While Valley has been one of the few financial institutions to maintain its quarterly dividend levels throughout the Great Recession, we also recognize that we are entering an economic cycle where greater levels of capital may be needed. As net interest margins continue to tighten and regulatory costs increase, asset growth is essential for Valley to maintain its profitability. As witnessed in the third quarter of 2013, our loan portfolio grew by $514 million, or approximately 19 percent annualized, from the second quarter of 2013. Although, we cannot guarantee the same loan growth in the future, we are cautiously optimistic about our ability to grow our franchise's balance sheet and our ability to compete in our marketplace. Additionally, we have taken a number of steps to reduce expenses during 2013, including the replacement of certain junior subordinated debentures with lower cost long-term debt and our freezing of the Board's retirement plan and the Bank's defined benefit pension plans," said Gerald H. Lipkin, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer.
"It has been our desire to maintain dividend levels, and do not take today's action to reduce the dividend lightly. While our performance and capital are already strong, the quarterly retention of a higher amount of capital will provide us more flexibility to grow the business. The dividend reduction was not the result of any regulatory actions. The Federal Reserve has cautioned all bank holding companies about distributing dividends which may reduce the level of capital or not allow capital to grow in anticipation of new higher capital levels as required under Basel III," Lipkin added.