Intel joins dividend hike parade

@CNNMoneyTech May 11, 2011: 10:46 AM ET

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Intel Corp announced Wednesday that it will hike its quarterly dividend by another 16%, marking the second increase in six months and adding to a recent list of corporate payout hikes.

The chipmaker said it will pay investors a cash dividend of 21 cents per share beginning in the third quarter. That's on top of an 18 cent increase announced in November.

All told, Intel has raised its dividend 30% over the last six months. On an annual basis, it will pay a dividend of 84 cents per share.

Also on Wednesday, Macy's hiked its quarterly dividend to 10 cents per share from 5 cents per share after reporting strong quarterly results.

Pepsi (PEP, Fortune 500), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ, Fortune 500) and IBM (IBM, Fortune 500) and many other big companies have announced plans to increase dividends in recent weeks. After cutting costs and hunkering down in the recession, these companies have benefited from a rally in the stock market and low borrowing costs that has resulted in record amounts of cash piling up on their balance sheets.

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In addition to dividends, many companies have also increased share buybacks.

Intel also raised the limit for share repurchases by an additional $10 billion in January, bringing the total outstanding buyback authorization to $14.2 billion. In the first quarter, Intel bought $4 billion worth of its own stock.

Paul Otellini, Intel's chief executive, said the company is on track for another record year as global demand for computers remains strong.

"Intel's current and projected growth is generating strong cash flow, allowing us to further increase our dividend," he said. He said Intel's dividend has grown at a rate of 33% since 2003, compared with 6% for the S&P 500 over the same time period.

Shares of Intel (INTC, Fortune 500) rose 2% in Wednesday trading. Macy's (M, Fortune 500) stock jumped nearly 7%.  To top of page

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