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Washington Post Company Speeding Up its Dividend Payments

What do you call it when at a media company where its largest newspaper’s editorial page is calling for tax increases on corporate gains while at the same time, it pays out its dividend before said taxes increase?

Oh yes…it’s called hypocrisy.

The Washington Post Co. will pay its 2013 dividends before the end of this year to try to spare investors from anticipated tax increases.

The media and education company said Friday that its dividend of $9.80 per share is payable Dec. 27 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 17. The payout is instead of regular quarterly dividends next year.

Washington Post is the latest company to move up its quarterly payout or issue a special end-of-year payment to protect investors from potentially having to pay higher taxes on dividend income starting in January.

Since 2003 investors have paid a maximum 15 percent on dividend income. But that historically low rate will expire in January unless Congress and President Barack Obama reach a compromise on taxes and government spending. As it stands, dividends will be taxed as ordinary income in 2013, the same as wages, so rates will go up depending on which income bracket a taxpayer is in. For the highest earners, the dividend rate would jump to 43.4 percent.

Not once in any statement from the President or anyone else at the White House during the fiscal cliff talks has the concept of sparing the increase in dividend taxes.

Oh by the way, one of the largest people set to benefit from this move is the head of Berkshire Hathaway, since the company owns tons of WaPo stock.  We know him better as Warren Buffet.

Believe our new junior senator has a rule named after him.

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