KARACHI: Lucky Cement Ltd has completed a second share buyback exercise representing 6.5 per cent of its paid-up capital at spot prices, the company said on Tuesday.

According to data compiled by Arif Habib Ltd, the cement maker’s average purchase price was Rs632.60 per share for 20.375 million shares that it bought between June 2 and Nov 20.

As a result, the share buyback cost the company a total of Rs12.9 billion, which makes it the biggest exercise of its kind conducted on the Pakistan Stock Exchange.

The company completed its first buyback round consisting of 10m shares back in March at a total cost of Rs4.35bn. The stated purpose of the buyback exercise is to cancel the shares after acquiring them using the company’s distributable profits.

Many listed companies have carried out share repurchase exercises in the ready market in the recent past. The total number of shares goes down once a company conducts a buyback, leading to an increase in its earnings per share as well as its break-up value — the amount that the company would be worth if it was liquidated.

Companies that have completed share buybacks in recent months include Netsol Technologies Ltd, JDW Sugar Mills Ltd, Bank Alfalah Ltd, Engro Corporation Ltd, Kohat Cement Company Ltd, Habib Bank Ltd and Kohinoor Textile Mills Ltd.

Some analysts believe the reduction in the volume of tradeable shares is bad for the stock market. Others say the exercise provides investors with a higher-than-usual share price to liquidate their investments.

Published in Dawn, November 22nd, 2023

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