Photographer: Joe Buglewicz/Bloomberg

Bridgestone Jumps to 15-Month High on $1.3 Billion Share Buyback

Bridgestone Corp. rose to a 15-month high in Tokyo trading after announcing it will repurchase as m 150 billion yen ($1.3 billion) in its biggest stock buyback since at least 2000.

The shares gained 4.9 percent to 4,528 yen as of 10:19 a.m., headed for the highest close since Nov. 12, 2015. Trading volume was six times the 30-day average for this time of day. The benchmark Topix index fell 0.3 percent.

The Tokyo-based tiremaker said on Friday that it would buy back as many as 50 million shares, or 6.4 percent of the securities outstanding, and cancel them in addition to another 20 million shares in treasury stock to boost capital efficiency and enterprise value.

Bridgestone is initiating the share buyback as operating profit fell for the first time in seven years as a stronger yen eroded repatriated profit. The company is projecting operating profit this year will remain little changed from 2016, with the operating environment continuing to require “careful attention” due to fluctuations in exchange rates and prices of raw materials.

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