The total interim and quarterly dividends paid out by South Korean companies listed on the stock market surpassed 9 trillion won (US$8.13 billion) this year, up nearly 5 trillion won (US$4.52 billion) from a year earlier. This was largely due to the fact that Samsung Electronics Co. increased its dividends by more than 4 trillion won (US$3.62 billion).
The Financial Supervisory Service announced on Dec. 4 that the nation’s 54 listed companies paid out 9.1 trillion won (US$8.23 billion) in interim and quarterly dividends this year. The number of listed companies that paid out interim and quarterly dividends rose by only three compared to last year, but the amount of dividends grew by a whopping 4.5 trillion won (US$4.07 billion), or 95.9 percent. By market, 36 KOSPI-listed companies paid out 9.06 trillion won (US$8.19 billion) of dividends, while 118 KOSDAQ-listed companies did 50.4 billion won (US$45.57 million).
In particular, the total amount of dividends paid out by KOSPI-listed firms increased by about 4.5 trillion won (US$4.07 billion) compared to a year ago, driven by Samsung Electronics’ growth in quarterly dividends. The amount of quarterly dividends paid out by Samsung Electronics came to 7.2 trillion won (US$6.51 billion) this year, up as much as 4.3 trillion won (US$3.89 billion), or 149 percent, from 2.9 trillion won (US$2.62 billion) last year. KOSDAQ-listed firms saw its total amount of interim and quarterly dividend payout rise by 4.7 billion won (US$4.25 million), or 10.3 percent, on-year but they are still miserly with dividend payout compared with KOSPI-listed companies.
Listed companies that paid out interim and quarterly dividends this year accounted for about 5.2 percent of 1,038 of the total. The number of listed companies that adopted the interim and quarterly dividend payout system stood at 392 on the KOSPI market and 646 on the KOSDAQ market, up 21 and 55, respectively, compared to last year. Firms listed on the KOSPI tend to introduce the interim dividend system more, while those listed on the KOSDAQ prefer the quarterly dividend system more, according to a survey.