24 August 2016 at 0:46 GMT
Qantas Airways Ltd. announced its first dividend since 2009 and handed bonuses to 25,000 workers as Chief Executive Officer Alan Joyce’s turnaround program delivered a record annual profit. The nation’s biggest carrier will pay a final dividend of 7 Australian cents a share and buy back as much as A$366 m ($279 m) of stock, according to a filing on Wednesday. Earnings before tax and one-time items surged 57% to A$1.53 bn in the 12 months ended June 30.
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Joyce, who has cut thousands of jobs, deferred aircraft orders and dropped unprofitable routes as part of a A$2 bn transformation program, said the three-year plan is now on course to exceed its target. The regular dividend has returned earlier than some analysts had expected.