On Thursday, Verizon Wireless announced it was finally going to distribute dividends to shareholders Verizon (VZ) and Vodafone (VOD) in January 2012. The last dividend paid was back in 2005. The theory goes that Verizon Wireless was going to hold onto the cash until Verizon could consummate a purchase of the 45% of Verizon WIreless from Vodafone it didn't already own.
Apparently Verizon was unable to hold off any longer and needed the cash to pay its own dividends. Clearly, from the stock reaction and the planned use of the proceeds, Vodafone is the better investment. Vodafone was up 4.5% Friday and plans to pay nearly $3B in special dividends in February 2012. Meanwhile, Verizon was down 2% as the company indicates it will use the cash to just keep the current dividends going.
Read the full article at SeekingAlpha.com.
Disclosure: Long VOD in client and personal accounts. Please review the disclaimer page for more details.