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Lilly resumes $3B stock buyback program, declares dividend

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Eli Lilly and Co. said Tuesday that its board approved the resumption of the drug company's stock buyback program and declared a regular dividend of 49 cents.

Indianapolis-based Lilly said it originally began the $3 billion stock buyback in 2000 and has so far repurchased $2.58 billion in shares under it. The company said it plans to complete the program by buying back the remaining $420 million in shares by the end of this year.

Lilly also said it expects to resume systematic stock buybacks once the current program is completed. The size and timing of the additional buybacks will be subject to board approval, the company said.

As of March 31, Lilly had 1.12 billion shares of outstanding stock.

The dividend will be paid Sept. 10 to shareholders of record as of Aug. 15.

Lilly shares rose 38 cents to $42.42 in morning trading on Tuesday after rising as high as $42.47 earlier in the session, their highest level since September 2008.

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