Express Scripts plans $1.5 billion share buyback

Express Scripts plans $1.5 billion accelerated share buyback with Bank of America

Associated Press

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Express Scripts has entered into an accelerated $1.5 billion share buyback deal with Bank of America.

The St. Louis Pharmacy benefits manager said Tuesday it will initially receive about 20.1 million shares of its stock. It then will be required to deliver shares of its stock or the cash value to Bank of America or receive more shares from the bank, depending on the daily volume-weighted average prices per share of the stock during a valuation period.

The accelerated stock repurchases are expected to be completed by the end of next year's second quarter. Shares will be bought pursuant to a share repurchase program previously announced by Express Scripts.

The company plans to use cash on hand to fund the buybacks.

Express Scripts Holding Co. is the nation's largest pharmacy benefits manager. Those companies process mail-order prescriptions and handle bills for prescriptions filled at retail pharmacies. They use large purchasing power to negotiate lower drug prices and make money by reducing costs for health plan sponsors and members.

Shares climbed 88 cents to $68.04 Tuesday morning while the Nasdaq exchange fell slightly. The stock has advanced about 26 percent so far this year.

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