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Great-West Lifeco Inc. is raising its quarterly dividend to shareholders by 12%.

The insurance company declared an additional dividend of 5.2 cents per share, payable on Dec. 31 to shareholders of record at the close of business on Dec. 3.

Combined with its dividend of 43.8 cents per share announced Nov. 3, Great-West will pay a total quarterly dividend of 49 cents per share.

The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions lifted Covid-19-related restrictions on Nov. 4 that had prevented federally regulated banks and insurers from raising dividends and buying back shares.

Fellow life insurers Manulife Financial Corp. and Sun Life Financial Inc. also announced dividend hikes this month.

Great-West said it has set a target dividend payout ratio range of 45% to 55% of its base earnings.

Great-West CEO Paul Mahon says the new target dividend payout range supports a balanced approach to dividend increases in line with expected earnings growth while maintaining financial strength.

Great-West parent company Power Corporation of Canada also announced on Monday a 10.6% increase to its quarterly dividend payable in February.