Rio Tinto digs up $2.5bn share buyback following the sale of its Coal & Allied unit

Courtney Goldsmith
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The logo of Australian mining company Ri
The company has unveiled another share buyback (Source: Getty)

Rio Tinto has revealed a new $2.5bn (£1.85bn) share buy back using the proceeds from the sale of its Australian coal assets.

Shareholders in the mining giant approved the sale of its Coal & Allied unit to China’s Yancoal Australia in June for $2.69bn. At the time, some shareholders called for the money to be used to increase dividends or buy back shares.

The company’s latest move brings its total amount of buybacks this year to $4bn following two previous announcements in February and August.

Rio paid the biggest dividend in its history in August after first-half profit more than doubled.

Rio Tinto chief executive J-S Jacques said: “Returning the $2.5bn proceeds from our Coal & Allied divestment shows our continued commitment to delivering superior value and returning cash to our shareholders.

"This year we have announced cash returns to shareholders of $8.2bn, comprising $4.2bn of dividends and $4bn of share buy-backs. Shareholder returns of this scale are made possible by maintaining the strongest balance sheet in the sector and a disciplined capital allocation process.”

Read more: It's official: Rio Tinto has sold its Australian coal assets for $2.69bn

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