South Korean companies' dividend payouts to foreign investors surged nearly 14 percent from a year earlier in 2013, partly reflecting a growth in foreign investment in the local market, related data showed Sunday.
According to the Korea Securities Depository, local firms that settle their annual accounts in December paid a combined total of 4.63 trillion won ($4.51 billion) in dividends to foreigners last year, up 13.9 percent from 2012.
The increase was largely attributed to the payouts by Samsung Electronics Co., the largest single firm in South Korea. Foreign investment in Samsung Electronics surged 12 percent on-year with the company's dividend payouts to foreign investors spiking 84 percent to nearly 1.27 trillion won, accounting for 27.4 percent of all dividends paid to foreigners last year.
The number of companies that paid dividends in 2013 only rose 0.8 percent, according to the KSD.
SK Telecom Co., the country's largest mobile operator, paid out 320 billion won in dividends, the second-largest amount, to foreigners, followed by the country's top automaker, Hyundai Motor Co., with 284 billion won.
By nationality, investors from the United States were paid 1.97 trillion won, followed by those from Britain and Luxemburg with 461 billion won and 297 billion won, respectively.
The KSD data showed the total amount of dividends paid by companies closing their books in December amounted to 12.05 trillion won, up 9.9 percent from a year earlier. (Yonhap)