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Why the NAB share price is down 4% today

The National Australia Bank Ltd (ASX: NAB) share price has come under pressure on Thursday.

The banking giant’s shares have fallen a sizeable 4% to $27.63 in late morning trade.

This makes NAB the third worst performer on the ASX 200 index behind G8 Education Ltd (ASX: GEM) and Sandfire Resources NL (ASX: SFR).

Why is the NAB share price sinking lower?

The majority of today’s decline can be attributed to the bank’s shares trading ex-dividend this morning.

Earlier this month the bank released its full year results and declared a final fully franked dividend of 83 cents per share.

This morning its shares traded without the rights to this dividend. This means new buyers of its shares are no longer entitled to receive it. As a result, the share price will normally drop to reflect this fact.

The good news for those that are entitled to it, is that it won’t be long until it is paid to shareholders. NAB is scheduled to pay this dividend to eligible shareholders on December 12, just in time for Christmas shopping.

NAB isn’t the only share that traded ex-dividend this week.

Fellow big four banks Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ASX: ANZ) and Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC) also traded ex-dividend this week.

Eligible shareholders of ANZ Bank will now be paid its partially franked final 80 cents per share dividend on December 18. Whereas eligible Westpac shareholders are due to be paid its fully franked 80 cents per share final dividend a couple of days later on December 20.

Incidentally, the shares of investment bank Macquarie Group Ltd (ASX: MQG) were another to trade ex-dividend this week. On Monday they went without the rights to its partially franked $2.50 per share interim dividend. This will be paid to its shareholders on December 18.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro owns shares of Westpac Banking. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of and has recommended Macquarie Group Limited. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of National Australia Bank Limited. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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