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A.O. Smith increases dividend; stock split ahead

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- The A. O. Smith Corp. is increasing its quarterly dividend by 20 percent and planning a stock split following an annual meeting of shareholders Monday.

The Milwaukee-based technology company's new dividend of 24 cents per share will be paid on May 14 to shareholders of record as of April 29. That is up from its most recent dividend of 20 cents per share.

A.O. Smith said this is the eighth consecutive year that it has increased its quarterly cash dividend.

The company also said that it is planning a 2-for-1 stock split after shareholders approved an increase in its shares outstanding. Holders of the company's common stock and class A common stock will receive one additional share of such class of stock for every share held as of April 30.

The move will increase the total number of outstanding shares to 92.7 million.

Shares of the company ended trading down 4 percent, or $2.82, at $67.02 as the broader markets also sold off. The stock is up about 52 percent in the past year.