Waste Management reveals Capital Allocation Program
Waste Management, Inc. (WMI) announced that its board
of directors approved a new capital allocation program that includes
the authorization for up to $1.4 billion in combined cash dividends and
common stock repurchases in 2008.
Beginning the first quarter of 2008, the Company expects
to raise its quarterly dividends to $0.27 per share, or $1.08 per share
per year, which would be an increase of 12.5% compared to the dividends
paid in 2007.
As part of the 2008 capital allocation program, the
board authorized stock repurchases not to exceed the $1.4 billion, less
dividends paid. Based on the number of outstanding shares as of September
30, 2007 and the new dividend rate, the Company expects to pay approximately
$560 million in dividends in 2008. The amount of stock repurchased will
depend on a number of items, including capital expenditures, cash acquisition
costs and cash allocated to the retirement of debt, which are three other
key components of the capital allocation program.
WMI noted that the board intends to declare the first
quarter 2008 dividend in February, at which time the record and payment
dates for the first 2008 quarterly dividend will be announced. It is
expected that the first payment of the higher dividend will occur in
March of 2008.