Lockheed raises dividend, increases share buyback authority

Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Top U.S. weapons maker Lockheed Martin Corp (NYS:LMT) on Thursday increased its quarterly dividend by 16 percent and increased the amount of authorized share repurchases by $3 billion (1.87 billion pounds).

Lockheed said its board approved a fourth quarter 2013 dividend of $1.33 per share, up 18 cents, or 16 percent, from the prior quarter. The dividend is payable on December 27.

Lockheed said its board also increased the amount approved for share repurchases by $3 billion. The number of shares purchased and the timing of those purchases would be determined by management. The funds do not have an expiration date.

As of June 30, Lockheed had repurchased 63.8 million shares of common stock for $5.1 billion, and had remaining authority for $1.4 billion in additional share buybacks. This move brings that total amount to $4.4 billion.

RBC Capital Markets increased its price target for Lockheed shares to $133 from $126 after the news.

Lockheed shares closed up $1.99, or 1.6 percent, or $1.99, at $129.85 on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday.

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal-Esa; Editing by Bob Burgdorfer)

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