General Motors, fresh off bruising wage negotiations with its labor union and eager to goose its stock price, announced billions of dollars’ worth of cash returns to shareholders. On Wednesday, GM said it would issue a $10 billion share buyback and 33% dividend increase — a salve for investors who were rattled by the scope and length of the United Auto Workers strike this fall. GM’s stock jumped nearly 10% on the news. The announcement comes just weeks after GM executives argued the company couldn’t afford to give the union the wage and benefit gains it wanted. GM President Mark Reuss called the union’s contract demands “untenable” and said they would leave the company unable to make the investments it needed to compete with nonunion automakers. The UAW strike dragged on for six weeks and shut down production in key manufacturing plants. In total, GM said that the lost production and other costs related to the strike totaled $1.1 billion. New contracts for GM’s unionized workers in the United States and Canada will cost the company an additional $9.3 billion through 2028. Under the deal, workers secured a record 25% wage increase for 46,000 UAW members over the life of the contract. Of course, in announcing shareholder rewards, GM signaled it could absorb the financial hit from the strike. The company reported strong earnings in its most recent quarter, and now expects full-year operating profit of $11.7 billion to $12.7 billion. “Now that we have a ratified contract and a clear path forward that includes greater operating investment efficiency, we can resume returning excess capital to shareholders per our plan,” said CEO Mary Barra on an investor call Wednesday. The UAW had strongly objected to GM’s payments to shareholders in the form of share repurchases and dividends. One of the union’s earlier demands was that every member would receive $2 for every $1 million the company spent on share repurchases and increased dividends. Under the share repayment announced Wednesday, that would have come to about $20,300 total per union member. But the issue got scrapped during negotiations with management. The UAW didn’t immediately comment on GM’s buyback announcement. Buybacks — in which a company repurchases outstanding shares in the open market to increase the value of existing shareholders’ stakes — are a controversial but widely used tool for companies to reward investors. Critics, like US Sen. Elizabeth Warren, deride the practice as “paper manipulation” that artificially inflates a company’s value. On Wednesday, Warren called GM’s latest buyback “an insult” to auto workers who had to “fight like hell to get a fair contact.” “Now executives, company insiders and big shareholders are squeezing every spare dollar out the company,” Warren said in a statement. Even with Wednesday’s surge in GM’s share price, the stock is trading for less than it did at the start of the strike. Shares fell 19% over those six weeks. And while the stock has made up some of that ground, Wednesday’s gains still left it down 6% for the year. —CNN’s Matt Egan contributed to this article.