Apple's truly massive financial results on Tuesday were spectacular all around but perhaps the most impressive number is the amount of cash it has on hand. According to Apple's financial results it has a whopping $76.2 billion in cash, short term securities and long term securities. Even if Apple all of a sudden stopped generating revenue, the company could use that amount of cash to keep its business going for several years.
As the Wall Street Journal points out, the cash horde that Apple currently has in place could be used to give a $247 check to each and every person in the US. Talk about your financial stimulus package. It could purchase the hot Netflix company five times over if it wanted. The amount of cash could be used to buy out the investment bank Goldman Sacks, according to The Atlantic Wire, and still have money left over to purchase LinkedIn and Twitter.
So the big question for many people, including Apple stock holders, is what will the company do with all that money. In the past Apple has been quiet about what it might do with its cash. Some have suggested that Apple use it to pay a dividend to its stockholders. Others believe Apple might be saving money for a truly big acquisition. Some believe that it could use it to dramatically increase the number of Apple retail stores which, by the way, generated $3.5 billion in revenue in the last quarter. In the meantime, Apple continues to hold onto its cash. Unless it does spend a large amount of it this year its cash horde could reach the $100 billion mark by the end of 2011.