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ConocoPhillips Expands 2018 Share Buyback Program To $3 Bln - Quick Facts

ConocoPhillips (COP) said it has increased its planned 2018 share repurchase program by 50 percent, from $2 billion to $3 billion. The company expects to fully fund this year's $3 billion program, as well as its dividend and capital expenditures, with cash from operations.

ConocoPhillips noted that the 2018 expansion to $3 billion, combined with the $3 billion of shares it repurchased during 2016 and 2017, will fully utilize the board of directors' existing share repurchase authorization of $6 billion. As a result, the board has authorized an additional $9 billion for share repurchases, bringing its total program authorization to $15 billion.

ConocoPhillips initiated its current share repurchase program in late 2016. Including shares already repurchased under this program, as well as future repurchases based on the current share price, the $15 billion authorization represents about 20 percent of the total shares outstanding as of September 30, 2016.

The company paid down $2.1 billion of balance sheet debt during the second quarter, thereby achieving its stated debt target of $15 billion significantly earlier than the original target date of year-end 2019.

Ryan Lance, chairman and CEO of ConocoPhillips said, "We've lowered our sustaining price and the cost of supply of our resource base, deleveraged the balance sheet, focused on free cash flow generation, and maintained consistency in our approach to distributions and capital spending. Today's announcement is another proof point that we remain committed to delivering per-share production and cash flow expansion with compelling through-cycle returns to shareholders."

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