BUYBACKS GROW: America's biggest corporations spent more to buy back their stock in the second quarter. Share repurchases by companies in the Standard & Poor's 500 index totaled nearly $112 billion, up about one-third from the first quarter.
CASH AT WORK: Repurchases can be attractive options for companies to put their cash reserves to work. Companies' cash holdings have risen steadily since the financial crisis.
REWARD FOR INVESTORS: By repurchasing stock, companies reward investors by increasing the value of remaining shares. Per-share earnings can also get a lift as results are divided among fewer shares.