DDR increases Q1 dividend by 15 pct.

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BEACHWOOD, Ohio (AP) -- DDR Corp. said Monday that it is increasing its first-quarter dividend by almost 15 percent.

The company, which owns 417 shopping centers in the U.S. and Brazil, set its first-quarter dividend at 15.5 cents per share. That's up from 13.5 cents in the first quarter of 2013 and represents an annual dividend rate of 62 cents per share.

The new dividend is payable on April 8 to shareholders of record as of March 13.

Shares of DDR rose 2 cents to $15.48 in midday trading.