Raising its quarterly dividend by 2 cents, General Electric Co. (NYSE:GE) cited a continued strengthening in its financial performance. Although the payout remains well short of GE’s 31-cent dividend from before the financial crisis and economic downturn, the dividend increase is the company’s fourth in two years. Shares are edging down .06% in extended trading.
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Shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE:HPQ) continue to edge higher after the closing the bell. Apple is expected to release a new iPad in February, while Hewlett-Packard is expected to contribute its webOS software to the open source community. Shares of Dell Inc. (NASDAQ:DELL) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) are also heading higher.
The banking sector (NYSEARCA:XLF) bounced on Friday. Twenty-three of 27 leaders representing each state in the union agreed to pursue tighter integration with stricter budget rules for the single-currency area, while Britain said it could not accept proposed amendments to the EU treaty after failing to secure concessions for itself.
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