Bloomberg News

U.S. Bancorp Will Focus on Dividend Once Capital Rules Clear Up

June 07, 2011

June 7 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. Bancorp, the fifth-largest U.S. lender by deposits, will focus on increasing its dividend after regulatory capital levels are set, Chief Financial Officer Andrew Cecere said.

The bank is aiming for a payout ratio of 30 percent to 40 percent in the “long term,” Cecere said today at an investor conference hosted by Deutsche Bank AG in New York. Share buybacks are a priority after the dividend and will have a similar ratio, he said.

“First and foremost is the dividend level,” Cecere said. “That leaves us plenty of opportunity to invest back in the business.”

U.S. Bancorp boosted its quarterly dividend by 150 percent to 12.5 cents in March. The Minneapolis-based lender’s board also approved the repurchase as many as 50 million shares. U.S. Bancorp is waiting to repurchase shares until it has “more clarity” about regulatory capital levels, Cecere said.

U.S. Bancorp rose 2 cents to $24.13 at 11:53 a.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. The shares have fallen 11 percent this year through yesterday.

--Editors: William Ahearn, Dan Kraut

To contact the reporter on this story: Laura Marcinek in New York at lmarcinek3@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Scheer at dscheer@bloomberg.net.


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