Ryanair in share buy­back move

Belfast Telegraph - - BUSINESS - BY JOHN MUL­LI­GAN

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary RYANAIR is al­most halfway through its €750m share buy­back pro­gramme that it launched ear­lier this year, it has emerged.

The car­rier, which re­leases full-year re­sults next Mon­day, launched the buy­back in Fe­bru­ary, in­di­cat­ing it would ac­quire a max­i­mum of €750m worth of shares for can­cel­la­tion.

The pro­gramme is due to be com­pleted by Novem­ber. So far, it has bought €352m worth of its own shares un­der the buy­back, based on the average price paid per share in each trans­ac­tion.

While the buy­back will im­prove the earn­ings per share fig­ure for the car­rier, it has not pro­vided any boost to the share price, how­ever.

The first trans­ac­tion un­der the pro­gramme saw Ryanair buy al­most 256,000 shares on Fe­bru­ary 6 at an average price of €15.93 per share.

The share price edged higher in the fol­low­ing weeks, with the high­est average price per share paid by Ryanair hit­ting €16.49 on March 20, and €16.45 on April 10. Since then, the shares have steadily de­clined.

On April 25, Ryanair bought more than 629,000 shares at an average price of €15.57 per share.

Last week, it paid an average of €15.62 per share to buy al­most 561,000 shares for can­cel­la­tion.

One of the big­gest ben­e­fi­cia­ries of the spe­cial div­i­dends has been chief ex­ec­u­tive Michael O’Leary, the largest in­di­vid­ual share­holder in the air­line.

Ryanair is ex­pected to de­liver full-year prof­its that may be at the up­per end of its own €1.4bn to €1.45bn guid­ance.

Davy Stock­bro­kers cur­rently has a net profit of €1.42bn pen­cilled in for the car­rier.

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