Since most if not all of the o/s shares are already owned by insitutions and mutual funds, so technically speaking AZO is trying to buy back shares from these so called strong hands and paying high rates, does this make sense to anyone?
AZO has better information than the "strong hands" it is buying the stock from.
AZO is paying "high rates". High rates on what? They are using their free cash flow from their business to buy back high cost equity (stock held by the instiutions) with cash that they would normally earn 1% on in their bank account. This is the most shareholder friendly thing they can do.
The company is probably in there buying back stock nearly everyday, making the company more valuable for those of who chose not to sell at these prices.
AZO is doing more than $500 million in FCF per year. In the next five years the company could probably buy back 1/2 the company. The stock would double and still have the same market cap.
Funny! $500 mil is also the new amount of debt that AZO is issuing right now. This company is a accident waiting to happen. Buying its stock at over 10 times book with borrowed money when interest rates are heading higher.