Shares of Nike Inc. advanced 1 percent after the market close on Thursday as the athletic giant announced a two-for-one split of its common shares.
The Beaverton, Ore.-based firm’s stock split will be in the form of a stock dividend payable to shareholders next month.
Upon completion of this, the firm’s shares will double in number to about 898 million and begin trading at half the price on Dec. 26.
Nike’s stock value has fallen about 20 percent from its all-time high of $114.40 in May. With the split, the share price will be more attractive to smaller investors, who will in turn boost demand for the stock and lift prices and liquidity.
Nike also declared a quarterly cash dividend of 21 cents a share, representing a 17 percent increase over the previous dividend of 18 cents, to be payable on Dec. 26.
“Today’s increase, together with the four-year, $8 billion share repurchase program announced in September, reflects our commitment to delivering value for our shareholders and the ongoing confidence we have in our strategy,” Nike President and CEO Mark Parker said in a statement.