American States Water hikes dividend for 62nd consecutive year

American States Water Company (AWR) will raise its dividend by 8%.

The quarterly dividend will be increased to $0.242 per share, marking 62 consecutive years of dividend increases.

Today's press release states that the dividend increase marks the 322nd consecutive dividend payment by the company. For 62 consecutive years, American States Water Company shareholders have received an increase in their aggregate annual dividend.

"This substantial increase in our quarterly dividend reflects our Board's confidence in the sustainability of the company's earnings at both our Golden State Water Company and American States Utility Services, Inc. subsidiaries, and the prospects for our future and its desire to have a payout ratio that is more in line with utility peers," said Robert J. Sprowls, President and CEO of American States Water Company. "We believe that prudently increasing dividends enhances our ability to attract capital in the future to fund necessary infrastructure investments in our utility operations. We are also confident that our contracted services business will be a continued source of dividends for our shareholders," Sprowls continued.

Dividends on the common shares will be payable on December 1, 2016 to shareholders of record at the close of business on November 15, 2016.

The new dividend yield for American States Water Company, the parent of Golden State Water Company and American States Utility Services, is 2.5% based on a $38.76 stock price.

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