Shares of WEC Energy Group Inc. WEC, +1.36% announced Thursday plans to raise its quarterly dividend by 7.4%, to 72.75 cents a share from 67.75 cents, in the first quarter of 2022. The Milwaukee-based utility company’s stock rallied 1.8% in afternoon trading. Based on current stock prices, the new annual dividend rate implies a dividend yield of 3.26%, which compares with the current yield for the SPDR Utilities Select Sector ETF XLU, +1.27% of 2.94% and the implied yield for the S&P 500 SPX, +1.42% of 1.35%. Separately, WEC introduced 2022 earnings per share guidance of $4.29 to $4.33, which surrounds the current FactSet consensus of $4.30. The stock has slipped 3.0% year to date, while the utilities ETF has gained 7.2% and the S&P 500 SPX, +1.42% has rallied 21.9%.
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