By Cristina Roca 
 

Banco Santander SA said late Monday that its senior management has taken a pay cut to finance a newly created fund to help fight the coronavirus, and that it will review its 2020 dividend to make sure it has more flexibility during the pandemic.

The fund is initially expected to be worth at least 25 million euros ($26.8 million) and will provide essential materials and equipment, the Spanish lender said.

Santander Executive Chairman Ana Botin and Chief Executive Jose Antonio Alvarez will take a 50% cut to their total compensation, meaning salary and bonus, for 2020, the bank said. Non-executive directors will take a 20% cut.

The bank's board has also decided to consolidate all dividend payments from 2020 earnings into one final dividend to be paid in May 2021. This means no interim dividend will be paid in November this year.

This decision will give the bank the flexibility to maximize lending and support businesses and people in need, it said.

Santander said it still meets the capital requirements to maintain its current dividend policy of a 40%-50% payout ratio.

 

Write to Cristina Roca at cristina.roca@dowjones.com; @_cristinaroca

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

March 24, 2020 02:28 ET (06:28 GMT)

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