Westlake Chemical increased its quarterly dividend
On August 17, Westlake Chemical (WLK) increased its quarterly dividend. Westlake Chemical will pay $0.25 per share—compared to the earlier dividend rate of $0.21 per share, which represents an increase of 19.0% over the previous dividend. To be eligible for the dividend, investors should hold the stock by the close on August 28. The dividend is expected to be paid on September 12.
In another development, Westlake Chemical announced a new $150 million share repurchase program. As a result, Westlake Chemical has $290 million under its share repurchase program. At the end of the second quarter, the company had ~130.3 million outstanding common shares.
Westlake Chemical stock declined 2.5% and closed at $95.59 for the week ending August 17. Westlake Chemical traded 12.5% below its 100-day moving average price of $109.24, which indicates the prevailing downward trend in the stock.
On a year-to-date basis, Westlake Chemical has declined 12.4%, while Eastman Chemical (EMN), Celanese (CE), and LyondellBasell (LYB) have gained 5.5%, 8.0%, and 2.5%, respectively. Westlake Chemical’s 14-day relative strength index of 36 indicates that the stock isn’t overbought or oversold.
Investors can hold Westlake Chemical indirectly by investing in the PowerShares DWA Basic Materials Momentum Portfolio ETF (PYZ). PYZ invests 2.8% of its portfolio in Westlake Chemical.