While it is well known that stock buybacks have been among the primary contributors for the solid stock performance in the US in 2018, largely thanks to Trump's tax reform which allowed companies to use repatriated cash to repurchase stock, the following "Chart of the week" from Bank of America shows clearly just how pervasive the buyback wave has been so far in 2018, as the bank's clients deployed record amounts of cash to repurchase their own stock.
It will hardly comes as a surprise that in its latest comments on the surge in buyback activity in the current quarter, JPM found that the "unusually strong buyback flow was likely behind the outperformance of US equities during Q2."
And yet, after some massive buyback activity in the first half, is the party set to end? Looking at the chart above, BofA's Jill Carey Hall asks what may be next for buybacks after a seasonally-weak June. Her answer: expect a modest slowdown before another pick up in the late summer: