Convergence 2012 is happening in Houston this year — a great looking city with plenty to do. I am writing this awaiting the start of the opening keynote so there is little hard news to report though I have been made aware of some but have promised to keep mum for another hour. But there is already other news.
Perhaps coincident with Convergence, Apple announced this morning a dividend of $2.65 in its fourth quarter. It has also announced a $10 billion stock repurchase program. The company is reported to have $100 billion in the bank so these programs will put a dent in that but still leave a comfortable cushion.
A buyback program can be a concern though that’s not automatic. Companies use their capital, obviously, to make money but when the company can’t find better places to invest it will declare dividends and buy back its stock, in part to keep the stock price up. That’s what might be a concern, especially after Steve Job’s passing. I say might because $100 billion is a lot of cast to be sitting on and some adjustment and reward to the shareholders seemed appropriate.