NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Kroger Co. (KR) are higher by 1.23% to $73.84 in early afternoon trading on Thursday, after the consumer goods and services company announced a 13.5% quarterly dividend increase and a 2-for-1 stock split.
"Today's actions reflect our board of directors' confidence in Kroger's long-term performance and ability to deliver growth consistently to our investors," Kroger CEO Rodney McMullen said in a statement.
This is Kroger's fifth stock split. Previously the stock split in 1979, 1986, 1997, and 1999.
"The stock split will increase the accessibility of our shares and liquidity in the trading of our shares. We are especially excited that the stock split will make Kroger's common shares more accessible to all of our associates," McMullen continued.
Kroger also announced a $500 million share repurchase program.
Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates KROGER CO as a Buy with a ratings score of A+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate KROGER CO (KR) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity, good cash flow from operations, solid stock price performance and impressive record of earnings per share growth. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated."