The pharmaceutical industry is using a large portion of its windfall from Republicans' corporate tax cuts to boost its stock prices, my colleague Bob Herman reports this morning.
What's happening: 9 drug companies are spending a combined $50 billion on new share buyback programs, a sum that towers over investments in employees or drug research and development.
The bottom line: All of those buybacks were announced during or after the passage of the Republican tax bill. That money is enriching hedge funds, other Wall Street investors and top drug company executives, but isn't necessarily helping patients.
That's not all: Some drug companies also increased quarterly dividends following the tax overhaul. For example, AbbVie increased its cash dividend by 35% while at the same time committing to a new $10 billion share repurchase program.
Go deeper: Bob has all the details.