Arch Coal launches stock buyback program

Arch Coal launches stock buyback program

Arch Coal Inc. said Thursday that it will repurchase up to 14 million shares of its common stock, effective immediately.

The buyback would be worth more than $370 million based on Wednesday’s closing price of $26.45 a share. The repurchase plan represents about 9.8 percent of Arch Coal’s shares; the company had 143,544,602 common shares outstanding as of Sept. 15.

Arch Coal said in a release it will acquire the shares in the open market or through private transactions and the timing and number of shares will depend on market conditions.

“The long-term outlook for the U.S. coal sector continues to strengthen, and we believe that Arch’s extensive reserve base, highly productive operations and skilled work force position the company for future success,” said Steven Leer, Arch Coal chairman and CEO in a statement. “As a result, Arch’s board and management consider the company’s stock to be an attractive investment option, and we view share repurchase as an effective way to create value for shareholders.”

St. Louis-based Arch Coal Inc. is one of the largest coal producers in the country, providing the fuel for about 6 percent of the electricity generated in the United States.

Published September 21, 2006 by the St. Louis Business Journal

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