Apple Inc, the world’s most valuable company, is poised on Monday to confront one of the biggest questions in corporate America: what it plans to do with its $98 billion cash hoard.
Just days after its stock touched $600 per share, Apple issued a short press advisory saying it would hold a conference call on Monday to discuss the outcome of discussions about its cash balances. The move comes as investors have clamored for the company to return some of the money to shareholders.
The maker of the iPhone, iPad and iPod has $98 billion in cash and securities, equal to about $104 a share according to ISI Group analyst Brian Marshall.
Wall Street has increasingly bet that Apple will this year return cash to shareholders, taking their cue from Chief Executive Tim Cook’s comments about “active discussions” at the top levels about the matter.
Cook recently said he had been “thinking very deeply” about investors’ demands that Apple return some of the cash to shareholders via a dividend.
“Frankly speaking, it’s more than we need to run the company,” Cook said at the annual shareholders meeting in February.
Analysts have said the return of cash to shareholders could take the form of a one-time dividend or even an annual payout, potentially opening the stock up to a new class of investors who seek a dividend yield. Alternatively, the return could be carried out through a share buyback.
I see said the blind man. And now…
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