Forget QE: Wall Street’s new drug is the stock buyback

By Ryan Litfin

Share buybacks are now the preferred way to boost stock prices in the face of softening earnings. Quarterly spending on dividends has risen 80% and capital-expenditure budgets have risen 44% since early 2009, whereas spending on buybacks has risen nearly 5 times . In Q1 2015, SPX companies returned more money to shareholders than they earned, the first time since Q4, 2008.”…

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