Where would the market be without share buybacks?
The decline in equity markets seen in the last few months would have been worse without the countervailing effect of buybacks. But by how much?
Share buybacks are an enduring part of market practice. Warren Buffett loves them. And the numbers are huge. For example, the aggregate annual figure spent on buybacks by S&P 500 companies is approaching a rate of $1 trillion, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.