Shareholders in UK-listed companies are set for a boost in the coming months, with dividends paid across the FTSE 350 expected to reach a record level.
IHS Markit has forecast sweeteners across the 350 companies will total £20.7bn in the second quarter, up 25 per cent year-on-year.
Ordinary dividends are predicted to reach £17.4bn, up nine per cent on 2016. At a constant currency rate, the total would be £16.3bn, up 1.7 per cent.
“Relative weakness of sterling against the dollar is the key driver of higher payouts to UK investors this quarter (33 per cent of the predicted payments are determined in dollars, including key payers like BP, Royal Dutch Shell and HSBC),” the IHS report said.
“Excluding that favourable exchange rate tailwind, ordinary dividends are predicted to grow by a modest 1.7 per cent to £16.3bn.”
FTSE 350 second quarter dividends (£bn)
|Year||Ordinary dividends||Special dividends||Total dividends|
Royal Dutch Shell, Vodafone, HSBC and BP had the biggest dividends after National Grid, with the five paying out £12.7bn between them.
Utilities, led by the Grid, accounted for 25 per cent of the total payout, with oil majors BP and Royal Dutch Shell making up 22 per cent of the total alone.