ANZ (ASX:ANZ) has completed the sale of its 20 per cent stake in Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank and will buy back $1.5 billion in shares as part of the capital management plan.
ANZ said it is now in a position to commence returning surplus capital to shareholders while still complying with APRA’s capital requirements.
The bank has already purchased around 500 million shares on market to neutralise the effect of the dividend reinvestment program for the interim and final 2017 dividends, as well as the impact on ANZ’s share-based employee compensation plans.
According to the bank, the divestment of its non-core businesses, including the sale of its Australian life insurance business last week, should provide ANZ with the flexibility to consider further capital management initiatives in the future.
The purchase of shares will likely begin in January 2018.
Shares in ANZ (ASX:ANZ) closed 0.98 per cent lower to $28.22.