Components maker Noble International has suspended dividend payments to shareholders.

Chief executive officer Thomas Saeli cited "weak economic and automotive environments in North America" in a statement, adding: "We believe that this action is in the best interest of both shareholders and the company as it allows Noble to protect liquidity while giving management the necessary flexibility to continue making investments in high growth emerging markets.

"Suspension of our dividend is one of many cash generation and cost efficiency measures that we have undertaken this year to help offset lower production volumes. Other actions have included facility closures and restructuring, capital spending elimination, overhead and operating efficiencies, and working capital management."

He said Noble hoped to resume payments "when conditions are more favourable."

General Motors also suspended paying dividends this week.