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ANALYSIS: S&P 500 Buybacks and M&A Reach Pre-Pandemic Levels

Dec. 10, 2020, 9:17 AM

November data indicate that S&P 500 companies are parting ways with cash by way of new buyback programs and M&A acquisitions at pre-pandemic levels for the first time since the onset of the coronavirus crisis. The data also show that there is overlap between these two corporate actions: Many companies in the index have recently been announcing both share repurchases and M&A acquisitions in close timing with one another.

Healthy companies are able to engage in share repurchases and M&A acquisitions, which generally require having both cash and a positive outlook. The pandemic has also shown the inverse to be...

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