* Board to take up idea in second half
* Dividend or buyback 'would be appropriate,' CFO says
June 6 Farm equipment maker Agco Corp
is weighing whether to begin paying its shareholders a regular
dividend, with the board likely to take the matter up later this
year, a top executive said.
"We're getting closer to the time where a share buyback or a
dividend program would be appropriate," Chief Financial Officer
Andy Beck told an investor conference in New York on Tuesday
after the close of trading. "We would expect to ... have a
discussion about share repurchase, dividend opportunities or
alternatives, more likely in the second half of the year."
Like rivals Deere & Co and CNH Global,
Duluth, Georgia-based Agco has been riding a wave of strong
demand for farm equipment driven, by booming sales of commodity
Deere raised its quarterly dividend to 46 cents per share in
Analysts expect the company to notch 23 percent profit
growth this year, on a 17 percent rise in sales, according to
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Nonetheless, Agco shares have lagged those of its
competitors. Over the past year, the stock is down 20 percent, a
steeper slide than Deere's 13 percent or the 7 percent decline
of the Standard & Poor's capital goods industry index.