Gilead Sciences Approves Plans to Buy Back Up to $5B in shares

Biotechnology company Gilead Sciences Inc. (GILD) said Tuesday its board of directors approved plans to repurchase up to $5 billion of the company’s common stock through May 2013.

“Gilead’s Board of Directors and senior management team believe that the stock repurchase program announced today represents an appropriate and strategic use of the company’s cash, while allowing sufficient flexibility for other expenditures going forward, including investments in research and development and licensing or partnership opportunities,”John C. Martin, PhD, Chairman and CEO of Gilead said in a statement.

Gilead also announced today that it has completed the $1 billion stock repurchase program that was authorized by its board in January 2010. Gilead said it acquired approximately 24.1 million shares at an average of $41.43 apiece.

Shares of the company were up $1.36 at $39.74 in Tuesday morning trade on Nasdaq.

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