Cognex Issues Buyback, Shares Tumble

Cognex Corporation (NASDAQ: CGNX) saw its shares trip sharply lower Friday.

Thursday, the company based in Natick, Massachusetts reported in-line Q4 earnings and announced a $150-million buyback plan. The company also cut its quarterly dividend from $0.09 per share to $0.045 per share.

This new authorization will commence after Cognex completes an existing $100-million repurchase program, of which approximately $45 million remains available.

The repurchase program is intended to help reduce share dilution associated with the company’s equity incentive plans, which the company strongly believes are instrumental in its ability to recruit, motivate and retain the highest caliber employees.

Also Thursday, Cognex announced that the company's Board of Directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of $0.045 per share. This dividend is payable on March 16, to all shareholders of record at the close of business on March 2

Cognex Corporation designs, develops, manufactures and markets a wide range of image-based products, all of which use artificial intelligence techniques that give them the human-like ability to make decisions on what they see.

Cognex products include machine vision systems, machine vision sensors and barcode readers that are used in factories and distribution centers around the world where they eliminate production and shipping errors.

Shares in the company ditched $3.06, or 5.2%, to $55.74.