The Deere & Company board of directors last week authorized an increase in the quarterly dividend rate to 44 cents a share, from the previous level of 39 cents. Since early 2004, the company has increased the quarterly dividend rate on four occasions, by a combined total of 100 percent.
"This action, in conjunction with investing to meet customer requirements for advanced, productive machinery and ongoing share repurchases, lends further support to our goal of delivering superior long-term value to investors," said Robert Lane, chairman and CEO. "It also reflects confidence in Deere's future direction and its ability to produce strong levels of cash flow on a sustainable basis. Over the period since early 2004, Deere also has repurchased more than $2 billion of common stock and made voluntary contributions to strengthen its employee pension and health-care plans."
The 44-cent dividend is payable Feb. 1, 2007, to stockholders of record on Dec. 31, 2006.