Monday, March 29, 2010

Tax Advantage of Stock Buybacks Should be Favored with Higher Taxes

Some good points today from Barry James of James Advantage Funds. With the expected repeal of the Bush Tax Cuts and the future Medicare Tax of 3.8% on unearned income will favor stocks that buyback stock over dividends. During the crushing losses in the 2008 bear market, we've alot of negative comments about companies that bought stock at much higher prices. It seemed alot of investors were leaning back towards dividends, but the higher taxes could very well favor companies that buyback stocks as investors won't be taxed on those.

Our Net Payout Yield Portfolio has always sought a balance between dividends and buybacks to provide cash flow for clients from dividends but also to limit any tax burden with companies that buyback stock. Besides history has shown that the combined yield is much more predictive of returns then dividend alone. It very much appears that the buyback portion could shift back into focus starting in the 2nd half of this year.

In the past stocks like Caterpillar (CAT) and Disney (DIS) have been much more focused on buybacks then dividends.














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