After The interactions with President Donald Trump On Tuesday, Apple revealed where a big chunk of the $252 billion it’s hoarded overseas but has agreed to bring back to the US in exchange for a tax dealis going: Stock buybacks.
Per the New York Times, Apple has said it would purchase $100 billion of its stock back from investors, “by far the largest increase in its already historic record of returning capital to investors.” Though the paper noted the company didn’t provide a timeline for the buybacks to commence.
Share buybacks, which are reaching record levels, are great for investors, including executives and employees, because they reliably lift stock prices by limiting the supply of shares for sale.
But critics say the actions can take money away from potential investments in hiring or research and development, and can increase economic inequality because they typically benefit wealthier people.
Investors should want companies to reinvest in themselves and their employees versus repurchasing their own stock to increase the share price, said William Lazonick, an economics professor at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell, who studies stock buybacks. “It’s nothing but a manipulation of the stock market.”
Apple said its profit increased 25 percent to $13.8 billion in the most recent quarter on the back of strong revenue growth for iPhones, the Apple Watch and its services business. Apple earned $2.73 a share, it said, beating Wall Street estimates by 6 cents. Revenue rose 16 percent to $61.1 billion.