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Northwest Bancshares Announces Special Dividend


April 23 - The board of directors of Northwest Bancshares Inc. (NasdaqGS: NWBI) has announced the declaration of a special cash dividend of 12 cents per share.  This dividend will be paid on May 16, 2013, to shareholders of record as of May 2, 2013, and will be in addition to the regular dividend that will be paid on the same day. The board noted that this special dividend was made to supplement the regular dividend for the first quarter of 2013 which was prepaid in December 2012.

The company's chairman, William J. Wagner, said, "The board of directors of Northwest Bancshares Inc. recognizes the amount of excess capital our company is carrying and our limited ability to leverage this capital given current market and regulatory challenges. They also considered the fact that persistently low interest rates have significantly diminished our shareholders' investment yields and cash flow. Given these considerations, our board felt that it made sense to return some of our excess capital to our shareholders at this time."

The board also emphasized that the payment of the special dividend should not affect the payment of the regular quarterly dividends in 2013 which are scheduled to be paid in May, August and November.

Headquartered in Warren, Pa., Northwest Bancshares Inc. is the holding company of Northwest Savings Bank. Founded in 1896, Northwest Savings Bank is a full-service financial institution offering a complete line of business and personal banking products as well as benefits and wealth management services. Northwest operates 166 community banking offices in Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio and Maryland and 52 consumer finance offices in Pennsylvania through its subsidiary, Northwest Consumer Discount Company. Northwest Bancshares Inc.'s common stock is listed on the NASDAQ Global Select Market. Additional information regarding Northwest Bancshares Inc. can be accessed online at