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Program by which a corporation buys back its own shares in the open market. It is usually done when shares are undervalued. Since repurchase reduces the number of shares outstanding and thus increases earnings per share, it tends to elevate the market value of the remaining shares held by stockholders.
The act of a publicly-traded company buying its own stock, sometimes at a price well above fair market value. Buyback is not intended to stop trade on its stock. Rather, it is an attempt either to reduce the supply of shares in the market (with the hope of driving up the share price) or to prevent a real or suspected hostile takeover. If a company becomes its own majority or plurality shareholder, it either makes a hostile takeover impossible or more expensive for the acquiring company. A buyback may occur all at once or gradually over time. See also: Antitakeover measure, Self-tender offer.