Southwest Airlines is raising its quarterly dividend to 6 cents from 4 cents and plans to buy back $1 billion in company stock.
The Dallas-based company said the moves reflect its strong financial performance and cash outlook. It will buy back $200 million in stock through an accelerated repurchase program.
Southwest said its next dividend will be paid June 25 to shareholders of record on June 4.
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In April Southwest said its net income more than doubled and reached record levels.
The company is alone among major U.S. carriers in being consistently profitable for many years, and for a time it was the only major U.S. airline to pay a dividend. It raised its dividend to 4 cents from a penny a year ago.