David Einhorn

Hedge fund manager David Einhorn has taken shots at Microsoft in the past, noting that the software giant should can CEO Steve Ballmer.

Now, Einhorn is taking a shot at Apple, for an entirely different reason. It has just too much gosh-darned cash on the books. Einhorn, who runs Greenlight Capital and owns 1.3 million Apple shares, has sued the maker of the iPad and iPhone for hoarding its cash.

Einhorn reportedly thinks Apple has a “cash problem,” and should kick back some of its $137 billion in cash back to shareholders.

“We do have a few suggestions as to how to help the shareholders make more money while allowing Apple to pursue all of its plan,” Einhorn told Bloomberg TV.

That’s a significantly different problem than what Einhorn criticized Microsoft for in 2011, noting that Ballmer’s “continued presence is the biggest overhang on Microsoft’s stock.”

Microsoft also has a huge cash pile, sitting on $68 billion in cash and short-term investments.

The Guardian notes that Apple’s cash position is nearly equal to the gross domestic product of New Zealand.

Apple did announce plans for a dividend last year, saying that it would pay out some $45 billion over three years. But Apple’s cash position has mushroomed since then.


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  • Bob

    He was right about Ballmer, as should be obvious to everyone by now, and he’s right about Apple retaining an excessive amount of cash. I’m surprised that he’s suing though. Maybe the recent Dell development convinced him that it’s better to act early and take a more aggressive stance.

  • BizDevGuy

    Given the Dell buyout and rumors that HP is considering splitting itself up, it seems that these are dry days in the Windows ecosystem, which begs the question: Is Windows OEM pricing sucking all the profit out of the PC ecosystem?

    • stupidaliastwerp

      I know you have this insane need to troll MS at every opportunity, but did you notice this article is about Apple?

  • http://twitter.com/fijiaaron Aaron Evans

    Ever think there is a reason companies are holding on to cash?

    Part of it is shareholders don’t want to pay taxes.

    • guest

      Nobody questions them holding onto some cash. It’s holding on to insane amounts that has shareholders up in arms. And no, in most cases shareholders haven’t objected to the taxes being paid and the proceeds distributed. That’s just a convenient excuse the companies have used to keep hoarding it. The recent Dell stunt shows you how bogus this all is. Like a lot of these companies they refused to divest their excess cash – in their case despite the stock tanking for a decade. But when Michael Dell and pals wanted to take it private, suddenly the taxes aren’t a factor and they’re prepared to raid/repatriate it immediately. Which shows you how ridiculous it was in the first place.

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