McGraw-Hill raises dividend


Even in the depths of the recession The McGraw-Hill Companies raised its dividend each year, so it’s hardly surprising that the string remains unbroken. The company’s board of directors has approved the 38th consecutive annual increase in the regular quarterly cash dividend on McGraw-Hill’s common stock.

The quarterly dividend will increase 6.4% from $0.235 to $0.250 per share. The dividend will be payable on March 10th to shareholders of record on February 24th. The new annualized dividend rate of $1.00 per share represents an average compound annual dividend growth rate of 9.8% since 1974, the company noted.

“The Board’s decision to raise the dividend extends a long and successful record of advancing shareholder value. Increasing the dividend underscores the strength of our financial position and confidence in our long-term growth prospects,” said CEO Terry McGraw.

The McGraw-Hill Companies has paid a dividend each year since 1937, the company noted, and is one of fewer than 25 companies in the S&P 500 that has increased its dividend annually for the last 38 years.

McGraw-Hill is a diversified company with financial services as its largest division. It owns four television stations.

RBR-TVBR observation: Lots of media companies don’t pay dividends, taking the view that reinvesting in their operations is more beneficial to shareholders. But dividends are a tangible expression of financial strength and the usual course for a public company which has achieved a large scale, as McGraw-Hill did many decades ago. Some of the broadcasters who had paid dividends suspended them during the recession, so we’ll see this year how many resume such payments to shareholders.