Disney increasing dividend by 15 percent; payments now semi-annual instead of once a year

MarketsAssociated Press

The Walt Disney Co. is boosting its dividend by 15 percent, and will now pay dividends semi-annually instead of once a year.

The Burbank, California-based company said that the dividend of 66 cents per share will be paid on July 29 to shareholders of record on July 6.

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Disney has been doing well this year, partly because of the strength of its movie studio results. Disney owns Pixar, Marvel and Lucasfilm.

Marvel's "Avengers: Age of Ultron" has pulled in more than $449 million at U.S. and Canadian theaters to date. Disney's animated movie created with Pixar, "Inside Out," debuted last week well above expectations with $90.4 million — a record opening for an original film and the fourth highest for an animated film ever.

Disney is also gearing up for the release of "Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens," on Dec. 18. The film, part of one of the most popular movie franchises ever, is anticipated to break records.