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CBS ups dividend by 14%

Eye billed as the steadier growing half of post-split duo

CBS Corp. on Wednesday approved a 14% increase in its quarterly dividend to 16¢ per share.

Move is in keeping with the company’s stated commitment to pay a dividend as high as or higher than Viacom’s after the media conglom split earlier this month. The two new companies have different flavors, with CBS billed as the steadier growing half that would offer shareholders a bigger payout.

The two companies (both still owned by Sumner Redstone) have already struck out on their own with aggressive deals.

Paramount agreed to acquire DreamWorks, with the deal expected to close in the next week or two. And CBS, led by Leslie Moonves, on Tuesday announced a groundbreaking merger between CBS’ UPN and the WB. New net, called CW, will be owned jointly with Time Warner. It’s an attempt to created one large, vibrant broadcaster by combining two smaller, financially challenged rivals.

CBS’ dividend is payable April 1 for shareholders of record as of Feb. 28.

CBS is holding a meeting for investors in New York today to discuss the new company.

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