UBS launches new share buyback program
On 9 October 2002, UBS will commence a share buyback program leading to the cancellation of shares. The new program succeeds the one in force since March 2002, under which UBS has already repurchased shares with CHF 5 billion, the maximum buyback limit established for the program.
A second trading line on the virt-x exchange will be in operation for the share buyback which can run until 5 March 2003. UBS will use this second line to repurchase its own registered shares, which, together with those bought back under the earlier 2002 program, will be cancelled on approval at next year's Annual General Meeting. The buyback program is aimed primarily at institutional investors and allows the repurchased shares to be cancelled in a tax-efficient manner.
For the new program, the Board of Directors has established a maximum buyback limit of CHF 3 billion. This equates to approximately 4.6% of the bank's total share capital. While maintaining its strong capitalization and ratings, UBS is committed to returning to shareholders capital in excess of its business needs. Strong cashflow generation, a reduction in the equity required to support ongoing business and strict capital discipline contributed to a BIS Tier 1 Ratio of 11.8% at 30 June 2002.
This buyback via a second trading line succeeds the program started in March of this year. A total of 67,700,000 shares were acquired at an average price of CHF 73.84 between 6 March 2002 and 8 October 2002, bringing the aggregate value of shares purchased up to the established buyback limit of CHF 5 billion. These shares will be cancelled following approval by next year's AGM.
Zurich / Basel, 9 October 2002