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Red Hat replenishes $300M stock buyback fund

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- Red Hat Inc., a provider of computing solutions that use the Linux open-source operating system, said Monday that its board had authorized another $300 million in stock repurchases.

It replaces a $300 million fund used to buy 5.9 million shares over 13 months.

Buying back shares can help support a company's earnings per share and offset the effect of paying employees in stock and options.

As of Feb. 28, the Raleigh, N.C.-based company had about 193 million outstanding shares.

Whether and when the company uses the money will depend on market conditions and other factors. It'll use working capital to buy the shares.

Red Hat shares fell $1.29, or 2.6 percent, to close at $49.26 Monday in a declining market. In after-hours trade, shares slipped a further 5 cents to $49.21.