The Tell: S&P 500 companies slash share buybacks despite record cash levels

Despite strong earnings and record levels of cash on balance sheets, large U.S. companies are spending less money on share repurchases, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.

There were hopes that the slowdown in buybacks that began last year would pick up with the prospect of a tax overhaul in 2017.

However, it appears that a pickup in share repurchases by large U.S. corporations hasn’t materialized, possibly because executives lost faith in the prospect for significant tax measures being pushed through Congress in 2017.

Companies in the S&P 500 SPX, -0.06% spent $133.1 billion repurchasing their own shares during the first quarter of 2017, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.

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