Ford shares rise after boosting dividend 20%

A Ford F-150 truck during assembly at the Ford Dearborn Plant in Dearborn, Michigan
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A Ford F-150 truck during assembly at the Ford Dearborn Plant in Dearborn, Michigan

Shares of Ford Motor rose on Thursday after the automaker raised its quarterly dividend by 20 percent.

Ford's stock was up nearly 2 percent in early trading following the announcement (Get the latest quote here.)

Ford increased its dividend to 15 cents a share from 12.5 cents a share on outstanding Class B and common stock for the first quarter.

"This increase is consistent with the company's capital strategy of financing its plan, further strengthening its balance sheet and providing attractive returns to shareholders," the company said in a statement.

The increase comes nearly a year after Ford doubled its dividend to 10 cents a shares from a nickel.