IBM Erases Five Years of Gains Buoyed by Share Buybacks: Chart

IBM tumbled to its lowest in more than five years this week after a disappointing earnings forecast. The shares dropped to $121.86, around the same level as when previous Chief Executive Officer Sam Palmisano forecast earnings per share of $20 by 2015. That target, buoyed by stock repurchases, was never reached.

From 2010 to 2014, International Business Machines Corp. spent almost $70 billion on share repurchases to boost earnings. Last year, the company moved away from the buyback strategy after CEO Ginni Rometty abandoned the share target in 2014. Chief Financial Officer Martin Schroeter said Tuesday that IBM spent $4.6 billion on share repurchases in 2015, compared with $13.7 billion the previous year. That’s the lowest amount in more than a decade.

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