First up the New York Times:
Siemens, the German electronics and engineering group, reported a big jump in orders Thursday as the global economic recovery stimulated demand for products from factory equipment to offshore windmills.
Siemens raised its dividend more than expected thanks to an increase in profit during its fiscal year, which ended Sept. 30. But the Munich-based company said that it lost money in the most recent quarter after writing down the value of a unit that makes medical equipment.
Siemens said that a revival in world growth, particularly in emerging markets, pushed new orders up 25 percent to €23.5 billion, or $32.4 billion, during the quarter ended Sept. 30. Sales rose 8 percent to €21.2 billion.
However, Siemens lost €396 million in the quarter after an internal audit revealed that acquisitions in the laboratory diagnostics business were worth less than the company had paid, leading to a €1.2 billion write-down. The charge was slightly less than the company had forecast in September.
Siemens said it would pay a dividend of €2.70, up from €1.60 last year and more than expected, as part of a new corporate policy of returning more profit to shareholders. For the fiscal year Siemens had a profit of €4.1 billion, an increase of 63 percent from 2009.Bloomberg focuses on the divi:
“We are coming out of the economic downturn with full momentum,” Peter Löscher, the Siemens chief executive, said in a statement...MORE
Siemens Lifts Dividend as Demand Buoys Sales, Orders
Siemens AG announced a bigger-than- estimated increase to its dividend for 2010 after resurging economic growth bolstered manufacturing at Europe’s largest engineering company.Yesterday's Bloomberg headline was:
The proposed payout of 2.7 euros a share compares with an estimate of 2 euros in a Bloomberg survey. For the last three years, Siemens had kept its dividend at 1.60 euros. The company said today that fiscal fourth-quarter sales rose 7.7 percent to 21.23 billion euros ($29.27 billion), beating estimates, and predicted moderate revenue growth for 2011.
Siemens, based in Munich, aims to sustain dividends, setting aside as much as 50 percent of profit to distribute among investors. The payout is a “strong signal” that Siemens will outgrow rivals and build up its presence in emerging markets, which generate a third of its business, Chief Executive Officer Peter Loescher said in a Bloomberg Television interview.
“The strong cash flow and dividend hike is encouraging, while the guidance is sufficiently vague to allow for future upside,” UniCredit analyst James Stettler said in a note to clients today. He recommends investors to “hold” the shares and expects them to trade at 85 euros within a year.
Siemens boosted its cash holding by 39 percent to 14.1 billion euros for the year ended Sept. 30. The dividend will cost about 2.47 billion euros, Bloomberg calculations showed....MORE