Apple Inc. came under attack Thursday from an influential investor
for its practice of stockpiling cash. Its hoard totalled $137 billion at
the end of last year, and it keeps growing.
don't hoard cash the way Apple does. They keep enough around for
immediate needs, and either invest the rest in their operations or dole
it out to shareholders in the form of dividends or stock buybacks. If
they need more cash for, say, an acquisition, they borrow it.
Apple has never explained why it is salting away so much cash —other than to say the company is preserving its options.
money belongs to shareholders, so Apple is limited in what it can
legally do with it. Leaving legality aside, here are some things Apple
could do with $137 billion: