UnitedHealth Group Inc. : UnitedHealth Raises Dividend 31%; To Buy Back 110 Million Shares
06/06/2012| 07:40am US/Eastern
By Melodie Warner
UnitedHealth Group Inc.'s (UNH) board raised the quarterly dividend 31% and authorized a new stock repurchase plan as the health insurer joins many other companies seeking to deliver a greater return to investors.
The company increased its quarterly payout to 21.25 cents from 16.25 cents and the higher payment will cost UnitedHealth roughly $21 million more a year.
The board also authorized the repurchase of 110 million shares. The new plan replaces the company's prior 110 million share buyback, which had about 33 million shares remaining.
The company has about 1 billion shares outstanding.
UnitedHealth, the biggest managed-care company by revenue and membership, reported in April its first-quarter earnings rose 3.1% as swelling health-insurance membership helped boost revenue 7.3%.
Shares closed Tuesday at $56.04 and were inactive premarket. The stock is up 11% so far this year.
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