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The Globe and Mail

Leon's Furniture dividend jumps nearly a third

Terrence Leon, president of Leon's Furniture seen here in a Toronto showroom May 22, 2003.

Darryl James/ The Globe and Mail/Darryl James/ The Globe and Mail

Toronto-based retailer Leon's Furniture Inc. increased its dividend by nearly a third Friday after reporting higher profits and revenues in its latest quarter.

The company said late Friday it will pay nine cents a share up from seven cents on Oct. 8, a jump of 28 per cent.

The move came as the company reported net income of nearly $11.9 million or 17 cents a share for the second quarter, up from earnings of $8.6 million or 12 cents in 2009.

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Sales increased to $212.3 million from $209.9 million.

"Higher sales reflect a general improvement in the economy," the company said in its financial report.

"The profit improvement was mainly the result of three key factors: higher sales compared to the prior year's quarter; an improvement in our gross margin which was aided by the strengthening of the Canadian dollar along with a more favourable product mix; and the continuation of improved productivity and expense controls that were initiated in the prior year."

Leon's Furniture owns 38 corporate and 28 franchise stores in every province except British Columbia, selling furniture, appliances and electronics.

In trading on the TSX, Leon's shares rose 10 cents to close at 12.25.

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