You keep moving the goalposts. If you want to discuss corporate debt and leverage, do that. It's a separate (albeit tangentially related) topic from buybacks. And given low interest rates, companies would be foolish to not have some degree of debt locked in. Being debt free might be a good way to run your personal finances, but using debt responsibly to create effective leverage is like finance 101. But like I said, if you want to have this discussion, pick an individual company that has done something (dividend or buyback) and then let's discuss them. Painting with a broad brush is just stupid in this instance. I like dividends and buybacks, I just appreciate that the buyback has favorable tax treatment.