Harley-Davidson Raises Dividend To 21 cents. Harley-Davidson Inc. said yesterday Tuesday that the company will raise its first-quarter dividend by 35.5 percent. Harley will pay out 21 cents per share, up from 15.5 cents. The next dividend will be payable March 1 to shareholders as of Feb. 19. Harley-Davidson shares rose 81 cents, or 1.5 percent, to $53.35 in after-hours trading yesterday Tuesday. They closed up 1.5 percent at $52.54 in regular trading. That’s near the Milwaukee company’s 52-week high of $54.62 reached in January; the low was $37.84 in October.
2012 Japanese Motorcycle Exports To The USA Down 9%, Up 22% to Canada. Japanese manufacturers exported 48,440 of their motorcycles, a decrease of 9% comparing to an outstanding increase of 87% in 2011 versus 2010. In 2012, they exported17,564 motorcycles to Canada, a 22 percent increase over the 14,353 they shipped during 2011. Worldwide, Japanese exports declined 5% to 479,150 motorcycles. Source JAMA (Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association)
Senate Committee Considers Changes In Washington State Motorcycle Laws. A number of bills before the state Senate could relax regulations on Washington motorcycle riders, allowing them to ride without helmets and sometimes drive through red lights. Senate Bill 5141 would allow motorcyclists to proceed through red lights, in certain instances. Sen. Curtis King, R-Yakima, said he filed the bill because many motorcycles aren’t heavy enough to prompt weight-triggered traffic signals. Riders would be able to proceed through red lights if they wait a full signal cycle and the light doesn’t turn green. Capt. Rob Huss, a spokesman for Washington State Patrol, said his agency opposes the bill because it could cause unnecessary accidents. Sen. Don Benton, R-Vancouver, filed House Bill 5143 allowing motorcyclists 18 and over to ride without helmets. Several motorcyclists spoke in favor of the bill, including Confederation of Clubs of Washington spokesman David Devereaux, who said the current law mandating helmets was a “violation of privacy.”
Harley-Davidson Museum Brings Champion Racers To Milwaukee. Milwaukee’s Harley-Davidson Museum will host a number of champion motorcycle racers Feb. 22 at a public program called “Untold Stories: Built for Speed: The History & Evolution of Harley-Davidson Racing.” Three-time and defending NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle Champion Eddie Krawiec of the Screamin’ Eagle/Vance & Hines drag racing team and Andrew Hines will be part of the event. The program begins at 7 p.m. Cost is $12 for members and $15 for non-members.