March 24, 2020 / 12:18 AM / 7 days ago

SoftBank shares untraded with glut of buy orders after buyback announcement

FILE PHOTO: The logo of SoftBank Group Corp is displayed at SoftBank World 2017 conference in Tokyo, Japan, July 20, 2017. REUTERS/Issei Kato

TOKYO (Reuters) - SoftBank Group Corp (9984.T) shares were untraded with a glut of buy orders on Tuesday after the company announced up to $41 billion (£35.52 billion) in asset sales and a record share buyback to shore up its collapsing share price.

SoftBank shares closed up 19% on Monday, hitting their daily limit, after the tech conglomerate said it would buy back up to 2 trillion yen ($18 billion) worth of shares in addition to a 500 billion yen purchase announced earlier this month.

CEO Masayoshi Son’s foray into investing in late-stage startups via SoftBank’s $100 billion Vision Fund has hammered the firm’s shares as major bets soured, forcing a sell-down of core parts of its portfolio and buybacks - moves long sought by investors pushing for enhanced shareholder returns.

“We would have ideally preferred such an announcement from a position of strength and not because the (SoftBank) stock came under tremendous pressure,” Jefferies analyst Atul Goyal wrote in a note, upgrading his SoftBank stock rating to “buy”.

Reporting by Sam Nussey; Editing by Christopher Cushing

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