Bonus shares are additional shares given to the current shareholders without any additional cost, based upon the number of shares that a shareholder owns. These are company's accumulated earnings which are not given out in the form of dividends, but are converted into free shares.
Bonus shares are usually announced by the company with a record date, the date which is considered for the bonus shares. All the investors holding the shares on the record date are eligible for bonus shares. After the announcement of the bonus but before the record date, the shares are referred to as cum-bonus. After the record date, when the bonus has been given effect, the shares become ex-bonus.
Example of issue of bonus shares
When a com...