Since the commodity correction clipped the share price of, well, just about every company I follow, responses from the afflicted companies have been varied.
Australian iron ore miner Fortescue Metals has blamed short-sellers. XTO Energy
The independent oil and gas producer has announced a $5 billion share-repurchase program, to be carried out over the next three years. This course of action, which would knock out around 18% of outstanding shares, effectively says: "If you want to sell our stock, fine. We'll happily take those cheap shares off your hands." While buybacks won't always make you rich, this one has my full blessing.
Critically, Anadarko isn't taking out a second mortgage on the family farm to buy these shares. Purchases are to be funded out of free cash flow. Anadarko's position of strength contrasts markedly with that 2006 vintage of buybacks, in which companies like Office Depot
How does Anadarko find itself in this enviable position? It's a confluence of several factors. One, commodity prices, while not as high, are still high. Two, the company keeps lightening up by selling off non-core properties. That has brought in even more cash. Finally, while the company has some exciting offshore exploration programs, Anadarko largely sticks to what it knows best: domestic onshore resource plays. Deepwater plays notwithstanding, the company hasn't gotten out of its depth.
Along with EOG Resources
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Fool contributor Toby Shute was recently ranked 60th out of more than 115,000 members in Motley Fool CAPS. He throws thumbs around under the moniker TMFSmashy. He doesn't have a position in any company mentioned in this article. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.