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The Failure of Stock Buybacks

An S&P study finds that amid record levels of share repurchases, most companies have not increased shareholder value

The following is an excerpt from a report prepared by Standard & Poor's Equity Research

Share buyback activity by companies in the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index accelerated in the first half of 2007, reaching record-setting levels. The value of shares repurchased initially exceeded $100 billion for consecutive quarters ended December, 2005, and March, 2006, and it has continued to climb since then. Indeed, over the 18 months ended June 30, 2007, when the buyback bonanza showed signs of staying power, S&P 500 members spent more than $700 billion on stock repurchases.