U.S. companies announced a record $1 trillion in stock buybacks for the full year 2018.
This year, a new lower corporate tax rate coupled with a one-time tax benefit on repatriated earnings potentially helped companies to have more cash on hand – that could have been a major reason behind the spike in share repurchases by Corporate America.
According to TrimTabs Investment Research, U.S. companies, led by Lowe's and AbbVie, paid out $34.4 billion in buybacks to shareholders last week, thereby counting towards the year's repurchase announcements above $1 trillion - for the first time ever. That surpasses the prior record of $781 billion set in 2015. Buyback announcements have surged 64% so far this year, TrimTabs said (as reported by CNN).