TOKYO: Honda Motor Co, Japans No. 3 automaker, plans to boost its dividend payout ratio to about 30% from 20% in two to three years, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun reported yesterday.
The business daily said Honda hoped the move would help it boost its base of individual shareholders, which is relatively low compared with its rivals including industry leader Toyota Motor Corp.
Honda spokeswoman Makiko Yoshida said nothing had been decided on any changes to its dividend payout policy.
Honda has returned profits to shareholders mainly through a combination of share buybacks and dividends, with the combined payout ratio coming to about 30%.
Under the new plan, Honda will raise the dividend payout ratio alone to 30% from an estimated 20% this business year while continuing to buy back shares, but the focus will be on dividends, the newspaper said.
Honda said last month it would pay a quarterly dividend for the first time 17 yen at the end of each of the remaining quarters this business year mainly to attract individual investors.
Shares of Honda were down 2.48% at 3,940 yen by the midday break in Tokyo, under performing a 1.14% fall in the benchmark Nikkei average. Reuters
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