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Air Canada to buy back outstanding shares

Dec. 8, 2011, Montreal - Air Canada announced plans Wednesday to buy back up to 10 per cent or 24.7 million of its outstanding shares over the coming year.


December 8, 2011
By The Canadian Press

The airline said the repurchase program for both its class A and B shares will start on Dec. 12 and end no later than Dec. 11, 2012.

"The board of directors of Air Canada believes that the purchase by Air Canada of its shares represents an appropriate use of funds to increase shareholder value," the company said in a statement.

By buying back its shares, a company reduces its equity base, spreading profits over fewer shares. That increases its return on equity and earnings per share, two key ratios used to determine a company's financial health and investment rating.

Air Canada has not purchased any of its shares within the last 12 months.

Shares in Air Canada traded for as much as $3.70 in January, but have trended downward since then.

The company's class B shares were down four cents at $1 on the Toronto Stock Exchange on Wednesday, while its variable voting class A shares were down five cents at $1.01.

Air Canada currently has 279.1 million shares issued and outstanding, of which 247.4 million constitute the total public float.