The dividend will be payable on October 15, 2006, to all stockholders of record on September 8, 2006. The board also increased the number of shares authorized for the previously announced share repurchase program to 20 million pre-split shares, leaving approximately 10 million pre-split shares to be repurchased from time to time in the open market or otherwise. The share repurchases will continue to be funded solely from available cash from operations.
In addition, the board authorized a two-for-one split of its common stock. The stock split will be payable on August 15, 2006, as a dividend of one share per each share held on the record date of August 1, 2006.
"The two-for-one stock split will make Occidental's stock more accessible to a broader range of investors," said Ray R. Irani, the company's chairman, president, and CEO. "The 22-percent increase in the quarterly dividend rate comes nine months after the last increase and is the fifth rate increase since 2002."
"Since the share repurchase program was initiated last February, approximately 10 million shares have been repurchased through June 30," added Israni. "The decisions to raise the dividend rate and to expand the share repurchase program are in keeping with our commitment to deliver top quartile total returns to our stockholders. These decisions also reflect our confidence in the company's ability to continue delivering strong financial and operational results throughout the business cycle."
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