Peoples reduces semiannual dividend

BILOXI — The board of directors of Peoples Financial Corporation, parent of The Peoples Bank, declared a reduced regular semiannual cash dividend of $0.20 per common share, payable July 15, 2009, to stockholders of record July 8, 2009.

“This dividend level is consistent with our long-term goal of returning about 35 percent of our earnings to our shareholders,” said Chevis C. Swetman, chairman of the board and CEO of the holding company and the bank. “In 2008, our dividend payout increased to 59.6% of earnings. Knowing this level is not sustainable, our board of directors has concluded it is prudent to reduce the dividend in order to build capital in this troubled economy.”

The last dividend paid in Jan. 2009 was $0.30 per share. Previously, the dividend had been increased 11 consecutive times.

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