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Silver Wheaton mining at Lusimin Operations in Mexico.


Silver Wheaton Corp. tripled its dividend Wednesday after reporting its net earnings mushroomed 96 per cent in the third quarter to $135-million (U.S.).

The Vancouver-based silver producer said its board had declared a fourth quarterly cash dividend this year of 9 cents per share, to be paid Nov. 23.

The new cash payment reflects the company's new dividend policy that links quarterly payments to operating cash flows in the prior quarter.

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"We are pleased to establish a unique and sustainable dividend policy that allows our shareholders to further benefit from increasing silver prices, as well as Silver Wheaton's sector leading production growth profile," said Randy Smallwood, the company's president and CEO.

"Our new policy allows us to return a meaningful portion of our cash flows to our shareholders, with the current quarterly dividend tripling from previous levels. Importantly, it also provides us with the cash flows required to continue creating long-term shareholder value by acquiring further high-quality and accretive silver streams."

Earlier Wednesday, Silver Wheaton reported a profit of 38 cents per share for the summer quarter ended Sept. 30. That compared with adjusted net earnings of $68.9-million a year earlier.

Revenue doubled to $185.2-million on sales of 4.8 million ounces of silver and 6,300 ounces of gold.

Meanwhile, operating cash flows more than doubled to $167.2-million.

"Another quarter of increased silver equivalent sales, along with strong silver prices, produced solid financial results," said Mr. Smallwood,

"We remain confident of achieving our 2011 production guidance of between 25 and 26 million silver equivalent ounces."

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Silver Wheaton has stakes in mines and silver production around the world, including silver output from Goldcorp Inc.'s PeInasquito mine and Barrick Gold Corp.'s Pascua-Lama project in South America.

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