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The biggest stock buybacks of 2023

The biggest stock buybacks of 2023

In recent years, stock buybacks have emerged as an efficient way for companies looking to bolster shareholder value. 

By reducing the number of shares outstanding through stock buybacks, a company enhances earnings per share (EPS) by spreading its earnings across a smaller share base, thereby making the financial performance appear stronger on a per-share basis. Additionally, the decreased supply of shares in the market can contribute to share price appreciation, benefiting existing shareholders and signaling confidence in the company’s value.

Today, on December 26, we delve into the data surrounding stock repurchases, spotlighting the companies that have actively bought back their own shares throughout 2023.

Which companies announced the largest buybacks?

According to MarketBeat data, this year’s largest stock repurchase by far was announced by the world’s biggest company, Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL). 

On May 4, the iPhone maker said it would repurchase $90 billion of its shares, representing 3.4% of its stock float.

Also known as the “buyback king,” Apple bought back $527 billion of its shares between 2012 and 2023, surpassing all other companies by a significant margin. 

Energy company Chevron (NYSE: CVX) is the company behind the second-largest stock buyback plan for 2023. In late January, the oil giant announced it would repurchase $75 billion worth of its stock, translating to 21.7% of its share float, per MarketBeat. 

The announcement followed a $25 billion plan enacted in 2019. The old plan was terminated at the end of March.

Software maker Salesforce (NYSE: CRM) and Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) each unveiled $20 billion stock buyback plans in 2023. For Salesforce, this was a new repurchase program that followed a $10 billion buyback in 2022, before activist investors emerged. 

Morgan Stanley, on the other hand, reauthorized a multi-year common equity share repurchase program at the end of June, without a set expiration date.

The fifth-largest announcement was made by Home Depot (NYSE: HD). After beating Wall Street’s expectations, the home improvement retailer launched a $15 billion buyback program, representing 4.6% of the stock’s float. 

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