NEW YORK (
, one of the world's largest hospitality companies, has tripled its quarterly dividend, in an evident reflection of the company's confidence in the resilience of its business model.
Wyndham's board authorized the tripling of the quarterly dividend to 12 cents from 4 cents per share, beginning with the dividend that is expected to be declared in the first quarter of 2010. With this increase the dividend is equivalent to an annual rate of 48 cents a share.
In making the announcement, Wyndham of course took the opportunity to toot it own horn, saying that it continues to transform the company to drive free cash flow and is also confident about maintaining investment grade credit metrics. In addition to the quarterly dividend increase, Wyndham also announced its plan to resume the repurchase of its common stock under its existing $200 million stock repurchase program, which currently has $157 million remaining capacity.
Wyndham stock has advanced 2.3% to $21.70.
Other hospitality stocks are trading mixed.
stock has risen 1% to $26.40. Meanwhile
is dipping 0.6% to $14.20 and
has edged lower to $37, down 0.7%.
-- Reported by Andrea Tse in New York
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