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Shares outstanding are shares that have been authorized, issued, and purchased by investors and are held by them. Lorillard Inc's average diluted shares outstanding for the quarter that ended in Mar. 2015 was 360 Mil.
Shares outstanding are shares that have been authorized, issued, and purchased by investors and are held by them. They have voting rights and represent ownership in the corporation by the person that holds the shares. They should be distinguished from treasury shares, which are shares held by the corporation itself, having no exercisable rights.
Shares outstanding can be calculated as either basic or fully diluted. The fully diluted shares outstanding count includes diluting securities, such as options, warrants or convertibles.
Please note: GuruFocus named Shares Outstanding (EOP) is the shares for that exact time point. It is usually used to calculate balance sheet related items, such as Book Value Per Share, etc. While Shares Outstanding (Diluted Average) and Shares Outstanding (Basic Average) are the weighted average shares over a period of time (a year, a quarter, or so). They are usually used to calculate income statement or cashflow statement related items, such as Earnings Per Share, etc.
A company may buy back shares or issue shares in any fiscal period. If a company buys back shares, we should observe that the total number of shares decline. If the company issues new shares, the number of shares outstanding increases.
If a company buys back shares, we should also observe negative number for Net Issuance of Stock in its cash flow statement. If a company issues shares, we will observe positive number of Net Issuance of Stock.
Usually the presence of treasury shares and a history of buyback are good indicators that company has competitive advantage. But studies have shown that companies usually buy back at wrong time. Buying back shares below its intrinsic value increases value for remaining shareholders. Buying back overvalued shares destroys value for existing shareholders.
Lorillard Inc Annual Data
|Shares Outstanding (Diluted Average)||522||522||522||517||494||455||418||390||374||361|
Lorillard Inc Quarterly Data
|Shares Outstanding (Diluted Average)||386||379||377||372||367||363||361||360||360||360|