"return of capital"
My guessing interpretation is this lowers share's basis.
So if one purchased CIM $3.10, this will lower one's CIM basis to $2.90.
If one purchased CIM $4.00, this will lower one's CIM basis to $3.80.
As to why CIM does this?
My guess is CIM can not find better place to bet our(share holders') capital.
On the otherhand, AGNC used their capital to purchase AGNC shares to stop falling share price.
They have the same goal but with different motivation.
My guess are
AGNC is shrinking the floating shares which will not affecting the management's bonus.
CIM is keeping the numbers of the floating shares which might affect the management's bonus.
Please correct my guessing, if they are slightly out off the target.