Webster Financial Corp. in Waterbury, Conn., reported a preliminary fourth-quarter loss of $300 million, or $5.91 a share, and became the latest banking company to slash its dividend.
The $17.6 billion-asset Webster said Friday that it will cut its dividend by 29 cents, to a penny a share.
At least a half-dozen companies have cut their dividends after disclosing losses this earnings season, including Bank of America Corp., Citigroup Inc., and SunTrust Banks Inc.
Webster's results included a number of one-time charges, including a $188.9 million goodwill impairment charge related to its "commercial banking, consumer finance and other business segments."
The company still needs to determine whether there would be an additional charge related to its retail banking business, and will release its final fourth-quarter results in the "near future."
Webster also recorded a $129.6 million impairment charge on certain investment securities, a $118 million charge from the devaluation of trust-preferred investments, and an $11.6 million charge against equity securities.
Its provision for credit losses more than doubled from the third quarter and a year earlier, to $100 million.
The company also announced plans to cut an additional 200 jobs; it has already cut 247. Webster recorded $5.9 million of severance charges in the fourth quarter.
Analysts on average had expected Webster to earn 22 cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters.