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American Eagle Outfitters Inc. (AEO - Analyst Report) recently announced a regular cash dividend of 12.5 cents per share, up from its first-quarter fiscal 2013 dividend of 11 cents that was paid in Dec 2012. epresents ing an increase of 14% from the last dividend, this marks the company’s fifth dividend hike since 2004. The previous increase in the company’s dividend was in Jun 2010.

The company has a long track record of consistently paying quarterly dividends for more than 8 years. This dividend announcement marks the company’s 36th consecutive quarterly dividend.

The increased dividend will be paid on Jul 12, 2013 to shareholders of record as of Jul 1, 2013. This brings the company’s annualized dividend rate to 50 cents per share, with the current annualized dividend yield coming to approximately 2.5%.

The increase in the quarterly dividend rate reflects American Eagle’s commitment to its shareholders to keep enhancing dividend at a reasonably steady pace. The announcement was primarily aided by the company’s sound financial position and defined future prospects.

American Eagle’s financial position remained quite strong as of the end of the first quarter of fiscal 2013. The company ended the first quarter with cash and short-term investments of $496.2 million and long-term debt of $69.4 million.

The news instilled a reasonable momentum to the stock, as the share price of this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company gained 2.1% or 41 cents to close at $19.76 on Thursday.

Other companies, which recently increased quarterly dividend, include The Clorox Company (CLX - Analyst Report) by 11% to 71 cents, Tiffany & Company (TIF - Analyst Report) by 6% to 34 cents, and Baxter International (BAX - Analyst Report) by 9% to 49 cents.

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