Altria Group, Inc. (Altria) (NYSE:MO) today announced its 2013 fourth-quarter and full-year business results and provided its guidance for 2014 full-year reported and adjusted diluted EPS.
“Altria delivered another year of strong results for its shareholders in 2013,” said Marty Barrington, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Altria. “Altria grew its full-year adjusted diluted earnings per share by 7.7% on the strength of its diverse business model and solid performance by its core businesses. Higher pricing and our operating companies’ brand-building activities contributed to operating companies income growth in all three of our reportable segments.”
“Altria also took important steps toward future growth in e-vapor and other innovative products for adult tobacco consumers,” said Mr. Barrington. “ MarkTen is performing well in the e-vapor category, including its expanded test market in Arizona. Further, we believe our agreements with Philip Morris International create the foundation for commercializing our e-vapor products abroad and opportunities to expand our portfolio of innovative products in the U.S.”
Conference CallAs previously announced, a conference call with the investment community and news media will be webcast on January 30, 2014, at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time. Access to the webcast is available at altria.com. Cost Management In the fourth quarter of 2013, Altria successfully completed a cost reduction program, announced in October 2011, for its tobacco and service company subsidiaries by delivering $400 million in annualized savings versus previously planned spending. Although the cost reduction program has concluded, Altria remains focused on productivity and cost management. Cash Returns to Shareholders - Dividends and Share Repurchase Program In December 2013, Altria’s Board of Directors (Board) declared a regular quarterly dividend of $0.48 per common share. The current annualized dividend rate is $1.92 per common share. As of January 24, 2014, Altria’s annualized dividend yield was 5.1%.