FALLS CHURCH, Va. -- First Virginia Banks Inc. said its board has declared a higher dividend, continuing a string of 18 consecutive years.

The $7.1 billion-asset banking company, which has raised the dividend 26 times in the last 13 years, increased the quarterly rate on common stock by one cent, or 3.2%, to 32 cents a share. It will be paid July 18 to shareholders of record on June

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