Apple has over $200B in cash, and yet it borrows money to fund buy-backs of its shares — to keep its investors happy. How come?
Simple, says the NYT:
Mr. Maestri [Apple’s CFO] said that Apple would continue to raise money in debt markets in the United States and abroad to continue to return money to investors in the form of dividends and stock buybacks. Because Apple houses the majority of its $216 billion in cash overseas, it has borrowed money over the last three years to pay out more than $9 billion to investors.
And why is that $216B housed overseas? Equally simple: if Apple repatriated it to the US, it would have to pay tax.