Russia's Sberbank raises dividend payouts 53-56% y-o-y

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MOSCOW, June 16 (RIA Novosti) - Sberbank (RTS: SBER), Russia's state-controlled savings bank, announced Friday that it would increase 2005 dividend payouts by 53% for common shares and by 56% for preferred shares year-on-year.

Andrei Kazmin, Sberbank's chairman of the board, said a decision had been made at a shareholders' annual meeting Friday to pay dividends at 266 rubles ($9.86) per common share of par value 50 rubles (532% of par), and 5.9 rubles ($0.219) per preferred share of par value 1 ruble (590% of par).

The payout, totaling 427.9 million rubles (15.85 mln), represents 8.5% of the bank's 2005 net profit of 5.349 billion rubles ($198 mln), the chairman said.

The shareholders' meeting also decided to boost the bank's charter capital from 1 bln rubles ($37 mln) to 60 bln rubles ($2.2 bln).

Following the move, each of the bank's 19 mln common shares will have par value of 3,000 rubles, and each of the 50 mln preferred shares a par value of 60 rubles.

Sberbank entered the FT Global 500 for the first time in 2006, taking 232nd place, with a market capitalization of $29.2 bln.

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