IBM helped the US stock market recover after its historic crash last week by announcing plans to buy back $3.5 billion (#2.18 billion) worth of its own shares. Financial analysts attributed the upswing in the stock market directly to IBM's announcement. The company's move, along with rumours that Intel was also on the verge of a major stock buyback scheme, provided market investors with a much-needed boost in confidence. This encouraged investors to start buying shares, which led to a rally in share prices across the board. The technology sector surged higher than the overall average. IBM said the buyback was not influenced by the fall in share prices, but had been planned, and was decided following a boardroom meeting. IBM has bought back nearly $16 billion of its common stock since January 1995.
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