January 30, 2013 / 6:58 PM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-Potash Corp boosts dividend one-third ahead of earnings

* Company expected to report weaker Q4 earnings Thursday

* Mine projects wrapping up, will free cash

Jan 30 (Reuters) - Potash Corp of Saskatchewan said on Wednesday that it will increase its quarterly dividend by one-third to 28 cents per share, marking the second boost in 4-1/2 months.

The company’s shares rose 1 percent in New York and 0.7 percent in Toronto in afternoon trading.

Projects to increase the capacity or efficiency of mines in the Canadian provinces of Saskatchewan and New Brunswick are nearing completion, freeing up cash for Potash Corp, the world’s largest producer by capacity of the namesake crop nutrient.

The latest dividend increase is the fourth since the beginning of 2011.

In the shorter term, a lack of sales to Chinese and Indian customers has hampered earnings. The company will report what are expected to be lower year-over-year fourth-quarter earnings on Thursday.

The quarterly dividend is payable May 2 to shareholders of record on April 11, 2013.

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