Chico's Pays Quarterly Dividend - Analyst Blog


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Chico's FAS Inc. ( CHS ), operating in specialty apparel market, announced a quarterly dividend to 5.25 cents per share, or an annualized dividend of 21 cents per share, a 5% growth from the dividend rate in June 2011.

As per the company, the dividend will be paid on June 25, 2012 to shareholders of record as of June 11, 2012.

One of Chico's peers Nordstrom Inc. ( JWN ) paid an increased quarterly dividend of 27 cents per share on March 15, 2012. This reflected a 17% increase in Nordstrom's previous quarter dividend of 23 cents per share. Nordstrom's annualized dividend of $1.08 per share currently yields 2.0%, which is above Chico's current dividend yield of 1.4%.

Chico's has been actively managing its cash flows making way to reward shareholders in the form of dividends and share repurchases. During 2011, the company bought back nearly 14 million shares for an aggregate $183 million and made dividend payments to the tune of $34 million.

The company's total share repurchases in the fourth quarter amounted to $25 million, a total of 2.4 million shares, under its $200.0 million share repurchase program authorized in November 2011.

Chico's robust earnings for the fourth quarter came in at 15 cents per share, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 4 cents. Moreover, quarterly earnings surged 25% from the prior-year quarter's earnings of 12 cents per share.

Fort Myers, Florida-based Chico's designs and retails private label, casual-to-dressy clothing, intimates, complementary accessories, and other non-clothing gift items in the United States, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.  The company offers its products under the Chico's, White House/Black Market (WH/BM), and Soma brands.

The company's Chico's brand currently operates 601 boutiques and 84 outlet stores, White House Black Market runs 363 boutiques and 27 outlet stores, and Soma Intimates operates 169 boutiques and 17 outlet stores - cumulatively a total of 1,261 stores. The company has operations in 48 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

Chico's shares maintain a Zacks #3 Rank, which translates into a short-term Hold rating.

CHICOS FAS INC ( CHS ): Free Stock Analysis Report
NORDSTROM INC ( JWN ): Free Stock Analysis Report
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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

This article appears in: Investing , Business , Stocks
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