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Southwest Sets Buyback Plan

The airline can buy back up to $300 million of stock.
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Southwest Airlines

(LUV) - Get Southwest Airlines Co. Report

said its board authorized the repurchase of up to $300 million of the company's common stock, which at current prices would equate to more than 17 million shares.

Repurchases will take place in the open market or in private transactions from time to time, depending on market conditions.

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Southwest, based in Dallas, said any shares that are bought back may be retired or used to fund the company's employee stock plans.

Shares of Southwest were adding 37 cents, or 2.3%, to $16.53 Friday.