Updated at 5:14 pm EST
Amazon (AMZN) – Get Amazon.com, Inc. Report shares surged in after-hours trading Wednesday after the world’s biggest online retailer approved a 20-for-1 stock split and a $10 billion share repurchase plan.
Amazon said shareholders of record on May 25 will receive 19 extra shares of the group for each one held. Trading is expected to begin on a split-adjusted basis on June 6. The group also approved a $10 billion share buyback plan that it said “would enhance long-term shareholder value”, according to papers filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Amazon purchased $2.12 billion of a $5 billion buyback plan first unveiled in 2016.
The split follows a similar move by Google parent Alphabet (GOOGL) – Get Alphabet Inc. Class A Report earlier this year, likely to take place in July, that would leave investors with one Google stock and a dividend payment of 19 more shares, all priced at around $160 each.
Apple (AAPL) – Get Apple Inc. Report and Tesla (TSLA) – Get Tesla Inc Report have also executed splits over the past two years, and today’s move makes Amazon stock a more attractive and attainable proposition for retail investors who, powered by a wave of mobile trading apps and zero-commission brokers, suddenly find their collective power capturing the attention of the biggest companies in the world.
Amazon shares were marked 6.26% higher in after-hours trading following news of the split to indicate a Thursday opening bell price of $2,960.00 each, a move that would still leave the stock with a year-to-date decline of around 13.1%.
Amazon’s net income nearly doubled from last year to $14.3 billion over the three months ending in December, thanks in large part to an $11.8 billion boost from Amazon’s stake in EV maker Rivian Automotive (RIVN) – Get Rivian Automotive, Inc. Class A Report.
Sales were up 9% to a record $137.5 billion, while revenues at Amazon Web Services soared 40% to a record $17.8 billion.
Operating expenses were up 13% at $133.95 million, Amazon said, linked largely to labor and shipping cost increases.
Looking into the current quarter, Amazon said it sees operating income of between $3 billion to $6 billion on revenues in the range of $112 billion to $117 billion, compared to the Refinitiv forecast of $120 billion.