Viacom cuts dividend by 50%

Viacom (VIAB/VIA) will lower its quarterly dividend to $0.20 per share.

Dividends have been paid by Viacom since 2010, when the company started with a quarterly dividend of $0.15 per share.

The media company, owner of the ao the Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1 and Spike brands, is reducing its dividend payout to preserve capital and will proceed to access debt capital markets in the near term to improve liquidity. These actions are designed to balance the Company's focus on a strong balance sheet and its strategy to invest in world class content and pursue opportunities to grow its core businesses, according to Viacom's press release.

The company will save about $300 million annually because of the lower dividend. Viacom has a debt of more than $12 billion.

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