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WesBanco (WSBC) Extends Share Buyback & Hikes Dividend By 3%

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WesBanco, Inc. WSBC has announced that its board of directors approved a 3% hike in the quarterly cash dividend and authorized extension of the stock repurchase program of up to additional 3.2 million shares.

The buyback plan, originally announced in August 2021 (additional authorized repurchase of up to 3.2 million shares), has approximately 0.2 million shares remaining under the authorization. As of Dec 31, 2021, the two buybacks combined represent approximately 5.4% of the shares outstanding. The program does not have an expiration date.

Further, WesBanco increased the quarterly dividend to 34 cents per share. This represents a dividend yield of 3.93% based on the last day’s closing price of $34.63, which is quite impressive compared with the industry’s yield of 1.73%. This yield is not only attractive for investors, but also represents a steady income stream.

The new dividend will be paid out on Apr 1 to its shareholders as of record on Mar 11, 2022. WesBanco has hiked its dividend for the fifteenth time since 2010. This represents a cumulative increase of 143% over the period and reflects the company’s strong capital position. The company hiked its quarterly cash dividend last in February 2021, by 3.1%.

These efforts reflect WesBanco’s commitment to boost shareholder value through its strong cash-generation capabilities while retaining sufficient capital for growing organically.

Over the past three months, shares of WSBC have gained 4.9% against a 1.1% decline of the industry it belongs to.

Zacks Investment Research
Zacks Investment Research


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WesBanco currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 (Strong Buy) Rank stocks here.

Other Banks That Took Similar Steps

Over the past couple of months, several banks have rewarded shareholders with new share-repurchase programs and dividend hikes. Some of these are M&T Bank Corporation MTB, CVB Financial Corp. CVBF and BankUnited, Inc. BKU.

M&T Bank announced that its board of directors has re-authorized its stock repurchase program, which was suspended in 2021 until the closing of the People's United Financial acquisition. The buyback allows up to $800 million for common stock repurchases.

Other than repurchases of common stock, M&T Bank hiked its quarterly dividend by 9% to $1.20 per share in November 2021.

CVB Financial also announced a new share repurchase plan. Its board of directors has approved the repurchase of up to 10 million shares of CVBF’s outstanding stock. There is no expiration date for this program.

The new repurchase plan replaces the previous one, which authorized CVB Financial to buy back up to 10 million shares. This plan was announced in August 2016. As of Dec 31, 2021, authorization to repurchase 4.1 million shares remained.

BankUnited has announced a new share repurchase plan. The company’s board of directors has approved the repurchase of up to $150 million in shares of BKU’s outstanding stock. There is no expiration date for this program.

The new repurchase plan is of the same value as the previous one announced in October 2021. As of Dec 31, 2021, $26.5 million worth of shares were left to be repurchased under this old program.


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