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MERIDIAN DIAGNOSTICS DECLARES 3 PERCENT STOCK DIVIDEND AND INCREASES REGULAR QUARTERLY CASH DIVIDEND RATE BY 20 PERCENT

 CINCINNATI, Dec. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Meridian Diagnostics, Inc. (NASDAQ-NMS: KITS), Cincinnati, today announced that the board of directors declared a special fiscal year-end 3 percent stock dividend to shareholders of record Dec. 13, 1993. The payment date for this stock dividend is Dec. 23, 1993. Cash will be paid in lieu of the issuance of fractional shares.
 The board also moved to increase the regular quarterly cash dividend from $0.025 to $0.030 per share. At the new annual indicated rate of $0.12 per share, the cash dividend rate has been increased 20 percent over the prior rate of $0.10 per share. Taking into effect the 3 percent stock dividend, the cash dividend rate to current stockholders has been increased by 24 percent.
 The company indicated that these dividend actions were being taken as a result of Meridian's strong performance during fiscal 1993 and the favorable outlook for business during fiscal 1994. Commenting on the dividends, William J. Motto, chairman, stated that a stock dividend was chosen over a special year-end cash dividend to preserve cash for a number of potential product line acquisitions. He went on to say that management is currently reviewing a number of opportunities and that the company is well capitalized to pursue external growth. Jerry L. Ruyan, chief executive officer, added that the regular cash dividend was increased in line with the company's general dividend policy that calls for the payment of between 30 percent and 35 percent of forecasted annual net earnings.
 Meridian Diagnostics, Inc. develops, manufactures and markets a variety of immunodiagnostic test kits, purified reagents such as antigens and monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies, and related diagnostic products. The company is a leader in the area of rapid diagnosis of infectious human diseases. All Meridian products are used outside the human body and require little or no special instrumentation or equipment. Domestic and international market segments consist of hospital, commercial and reference laboratories, and physicians' offices. The company has a leading market position in fungal serology, and is the leader in parasite and bacterial collection, preservation and transportation systems. The company's shares are traded through NASDAQ-NMS (Symbol: KITS).
 -0- 12/2/93
 /CONTACT: Jerry L. Ruyan, chief executive officer, of Meridian Diagnostics, Inc., 513-271-3700/
 (KITS)


CO: Meridian Diagnostics, Inc. ST: Ohio IN: MTC SU: DIV

AR-BM -- CL010 -- 9738 12/02/93 10:59 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Dec 2, 1993
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