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SeaWorld stock drops to all-time low after it ends killer whale shows

Earlier this year, the Orlando, Florida, company said it won’t breed killer whales and would stop using them in shows.

Image: AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, File

TROUBLED THEME PARK operator SeaWorld said it will soon stop paying its shareholders a quarterly dividend. Its stock dropped to an all-time low today.

SeaWorld, known for its water shows featuring killer whales and dolphins, has been dealing with falling attendance and revenue as people’s feelings about using animals for entertainment has soured.

Earlier this year, the Orlando, Florida, company said it won’t breed killer whales and would stop using them in shows.

The company said late last night that it will pay its last dividend on 7 Oct, and the amount it pays will be cut by 52% to 10 cents for each share owned, down from 21 cents in the previous quarter.

SeaWorld said the money saved on dividends will be used to buy its own shares.

Last month, the company said its second-quarter revenue fell 5% from the year before, and the number of people entering its parks fell nearly 8% to 6 million.

SeaWorld operates 12 parks, including Busch Gardens, Sesame Place and Aquatica.

Shares of SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. fell 76 cents, or 6%, to $11.93 in afternoon trading today.

Earlier, the stock fell to $11.77, its lowest point since it began trading more than three years ago.

Read: SeaWorld is ending its killer whale shows

Read: Video: Girl in lucky escape after being bitten by SeaWorld dolphin

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Cormac Fitzgerald

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