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Google’s Schmidt to sell 42 per cent of his stake

Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt

Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters

Google Inc. executive c hairman Eric Schmidt is selling roughly 42 per cent of his stake in the Internet search company over the coming year, Google announced on Friday.

Mr. Schmidt will sell 3.2 million shares of class A common stock through a stock trading plan, Google said in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The plan, which Google said would give Mr. Schmidt "individual asset diversification and liquidity," allows him to spread trades out over a period of one year to reduce the market impact.

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Mr. Schmidt, who served as Google's chief executive officer until 2011, currently owns roughly 7.6 million shares of class A and class B common stock. The shares represent 2.3 per cent of Google's outstanding stock and roughly 8.2 per cent of the voting power of Google's stock.

Shares of Google, which finished Friday's session at a new closing high of $785.37 (U.S.), were down $2.21 in after hours trading.

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