The 25 Companies Spending Billions On Buybacks (ACE, AKAM, ABC, AOL, AVT, CBOE, CHTR, CSCO, COV, DISCA, DLB, XOM, CVX, HRS, HUN, JASO, JAH, NWSA, RDC, LUV, STJ, BSX, MSI, V, HPQ)

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12. & 13. Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE: XOM) and Chevron Corporation (NYSE: CVX) are both NOT interrupting their share buyback plans according to a Dow Jones interview on Wednesday.  $80 oil… who cares?  In the last earnings report, Exxon said it would spend another $5 billion in the next quarter buying back stock and Chevron has close up to $2 billion it can spend to buy its shares.

14. Harris Corporation (NYSE: HRS) is a company which offers communications and information technology to government and commercial markets, which means it is probably experiencing some ongoing choppiness in its markets.  Still, it said earlier this month that it would buy back up to $1 billion in shares to replace a prior buyback plan.  At $35.70, the market cap is a mere $4.4 billion and the 52-week range is $34.40 to $53.39.

15. Huntsman Corporation (NYSE: HUN) is recovering on the heels of the prior week’s $100 million share buyback plan.  This was once a takeover target but the credit bubble popped.  Huntsman stock is currently around $13.20 and the 52-week range is $8.47 to $21.52.

16. JA Solar Holdings Co., Ltd. (NASDAQ: JASO) is in the troubled solar sector and things have been very brutal there.  The $3.90 price today compares to a 52-week trading range of $3.28 to $10.24.  The company authorized up to $100 million for share buybacks and the current market cap is about $640 million.

17. Jarden Corporation (NYSE: JAH) an outdoor consumer products company, recently completed what was a $150 million buyback plan.  It approved a new plan, but of up to $500 million that can be used to repurchase stock.  The market cap is only $2.5 billion and the $27.90 price compares to a 52-week range of $25.60 to $37.50.

18. News Corp. (NASDAQ: NWSA) is up after earnings and on word that Rupert Murdoch prefers for COO Chase Carey to take over if anything happens to him.  During July, News Corp. declared up to $5 billion for share buybacks.  Now the company noted that this could be expanded if the company determines that it is undervalued.

19. Rowan Companies, Inc. (NYSE: RDC) is an onshore and offshore oil and gas contract drilling services outfit and the $80 oil threat is not deterring the company either.  This one announced a $100 million buyback plan and its market cap is $4.2 billion.  The $33.00 handle compares to a 52-week range of $24.36 to $44.83.

20. Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) has been hit hard along with the stock market, but a week earlier the company approved a buyback plan of up to $500 million in its common stock.  At $8.25 it has a market cap of $6.6 billion and its 52-week trading range is $8.01 to $14.32.

21. St. Jude Medical Inc. (NYSE: STJ) may be suffering from medical devices and joint replacement weakness if elective surgeries are being put off and delayed.  The company announced earlier in August that it would repurchase up to $500 million.  At $41.50, the market cap is $13.8 billion and the 52-week range is $34.42 to $54.18.

22 – 24. The trend has really increased in August, particularly as the stocks have been pounded and beaten hard.  We saw several big buybacks at the end of July as well: Up to $1 billion at Boston Scientific Corporation (NYSE: BSX) against a market cap of $9.25 billion; up to $2 billion in Motorola Solutions, Inc. (NYSE: MSI) against a current market cap of $13.6 billion; Visa, Inc. (NYSE: V) said it would buy back up to $1 billion in its stock against a $56 billion market cap.

25. The biggie in July was the $10 billion additional authorization from Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE: HPQ) versus what is a $63 billion market cap currently.  At $30.50, its new 52-week range is $29.75 to $51.99.

Not all of these companies will spend every penny under their approved buyback plans.  Many will, and many will authorize new buyback plans.  Companies are healthier than ever and many of them are telling the stock market that they do not believe the ticker tape.

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JON C. OGG