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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Mar 19, 2020.
Reward Work Act
This bill revises provisions related to stock buybacks.
An issuer of securities may not purchase its own securities on a national exchange if the issuer has (1) received specified financial assistance related to the COVID-19 (i.e., coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic, and (2) repurchased more than $1 billion worth of its own securities in the last five years. Additionally, one-third of such issuer's board of directors must be elected by employees for the issuer to be allowed to register securities.
The bill also repeals the Securities and Exchange Commission regulation (Rule 10b-18) that generally provides a safe harbor from market manipulation liability for an issuer engaging in a stock buyback.