Iowa’s largest manufacturing employer has approved a hefty stock dividend. The Deere & Company Board of Directors, meeting at company headquarters in Moline, Illinois, has raised Deere’s quarterly dividend 12%.

That marks the company’s 10th dividend increase since early 2004. The increase of 5 cents per share takes the company’s quarterly payout to 46 cents a share. Demand for farm equipment grew last year, thanks to strong crop prices.

Samuel R. Allen, Deere’s chairman and C.E.O., says he’s confident in the company’s prospects.

By Phil Roberts, Davenport