Lyondell Basel Industries N.V. announced Friday a new program to buy back up to 10% of its shares over the next 18 months. Based on Thursday's closing price of $81.25, and with about 426.7 million shares outstanding according to FactSet, the new program could be valued at $3.47 billion. The plastics and chemicals giant also raised its quarterly dividend by 9% to 85 cents a share, to be payable June 7 to shareholders of record on May 24. Based on Thursday's closing price, the new dividend implies an annual dividend yield of 4.18%, compared with the aggregate S&P 500 dividend yield of 2.19%, according to FactSet. The stock, which was still inactive in premarket trade, has dropped 6.5% year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 1%.
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