SAO PAULO/RIO DE JANEIRO, March 23 (Reuters) - Vale SA said on Wednesday that changes to its current dividend policies will be proposed at a shareholders’ meeting on April 25, an indication the world’s largest iron ore producer is looking to preserve cash amid a slump in prices.
Currently, management at Rio de Janeiro-based Vale proposes the size of annual dividends for the prior fiscal year.
But in a securities filing, Vale suggested that instead of proposing a minimum dividend payout, as management does currently, its board of directors would set a target in line with the company’s actual ability to deliver returns to shareholders.
Struggling with slumping prices and declining demand for minerals, Vale has been considering several options to raise cash, including asset sales and a reduction in capital spending.
Late in February, Vale reported a net loss of $8.57 billion for the fourth quarter, the miner’s worst ever, as weak commodity prices and hefty writedowns heaped further pressure on the company’s operations. (Reporting by Guillermo Parra-Bernal and Juliana Schincariol; Editing by Tom Brown)