USA: JCPenney approves $400mn share repurchase program

NEW YORK: America's largest fashion retailer J. C. Penney Company Inc announced on July 16,its Board of Directors has approved a new $400 million common stock repurchase program.

The new program is being funded with approximately $260 million of after-tax proceeds generated from the sale of the company's interest in Lojas Renner S. A., its previously owned Brazilian department store chain, as well as cash proceeds from the exercise of employee stock options.

Share repurchases under this program will begin after completion of the existing $3.75 billion authorizations and are currently expected to be completed by the end of fiscal 2005.

Robert Cavanaugh, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer said, "The expansion of our share repurchase program is consistent with the company's 2005 to 2009 long-range financing strategy, demonstrates the confidence that our management team has in our business and further strengthens our financial profile."

As of July 14, 2005, the company had repurchased 67.2 million shares of common stock for about $2.8 billion, representing approximately 75 percent of the $3.75 billion of its previously announced share repurchase programs.

J. C. Penney Corporation Inc, the wholly-owned operating subsidiary of J. C. Penney Company, Inc., is one of America's largest department store, catalog, and e-commerce retailers, employing approximately 150,000 associates. As of April 30, 2005, J. C. Penney Corporation, Inc. operated 1,017 JCPenney department stores throughout the United States and Puerto Rico.

JCPenney, e-commerce cataloger, is the nation's largest catalog merchant of general merchandise, and is one of the largest apparel and home furnishings sites on the Internet.

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Added: July 16, 2005 Source: Agencies
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