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Best Buy Co Inc , the largest U.S. consumer electronics chain, on Tuesday reported higher-than-expected quarterly earnings on a strong holiday season and said it would buy back stock for the first time since 2012. Chief Executive Officer Hubert Joly said on a conference call that Best Buy planned this year to start a cost-cutting effort to save $400 million over the next three years. Best Buy authorized a $1 billion share buyback over three years and announced a special dividend of about $180 million, or 51 cents per share, from proceeds from settlements of a lawsuit on price-fixing of TFT-LCD panels. Best Buy's sales at stores open at least a year increased 2 percent during the fourth quarter ended on Jan. 31, slightly more than the 1.9 percent rise estimated by analysts polled by research firm Consensus Metrix.