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Friday, July 31, 2009

Baxter International (BAX) Raises Buyback By $2B, Declares Dividend

Baxter International (BAX - Quote) said its Board of Directors authorized the repurchase of an additional $2 billion of the company’s common stock, which is expected to be executed upon completion of the company’s existing share repurchase program. Baxter has less than $300 million remaining under its previous $2 billion share repurchase authorization from March 2008.

Baxter also declared a quarterly dividend of $0.26 per share of Baxter common stock. This payment represents a continuation of the current rate. The quarterly dividend is payable on October 1, 2009, to shareholders of record as of the close of business on September 10, 2009.

Baxter is a global medical products and services company with expertise in medical devices, pharmaceuticals and biotechnology. The company’s main competitors include Becton, Dickinson and Co. (BDX - Quote) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ - Quote). Baxter’s products are primarily life-sustaining, an insulation against the current economic turmoil. We believe that investors will benefit by adding this stock to your portfolio. As such, we continue to rate Baxter a ‘Buy’.

Disclosure I am long BAX and JNJ shares.

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