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A Look at Apple’s Capital Return Program

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Aug. 9 2017, Updated 7:35 a.m. ET

Apple returned $11.7 billion to shareholders in fiscal 3Q17

As we can see in the chart below, Apple (AAPL) completed $222.9 billion of its $250.0 billion ongoing capital return program at the end of fiscal 3Q17. Apple aims to pay shareholders $300.0 billion by the end of March 2019, which includes $210.0 billion in share repurchases and $90.0 billion in dividends.

In fiscal 3Q17, Apple paid shareholders $7.5 billion in share repurchases and $4.3 billion in dividends—a total of $11.8 billion.

Apple returned $34.6 billion to shareholders in fiscal 2013, $57.3 billion in fiscal 2014, $49.1 billion in fiscal 2015, and $42.8 billion in fiscal 2016. In the first nine months of fiscal 2017, Apple returned $36.7 to shareholders.

Apple’s chief financial officer, Luca Maestri noted, “We also returned $11.7 billion to investors during the quarter. We paid $3.4 billion in dividends and equivalents and spent $4.5 billion on repurchases of 30.4 million Apple shares through open market transactions.”

Apple had a cash balance of $262 billion at the end of fiscal 3Q17. Almost 94% of its cash has been held overseas.

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Dividend yields

Apple declared a dividend of $0.63 per share, which is payable on August 10, 2017. Apple has a dividend yield of 1.6% compared to 1.8% in fiscal 3Q15 and 2.2% in fiscal 3Q16.

The dividend yields for peer technology (QQQ) companies Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), Western Digital (WDC), and International Business Machines (IBM) were 2.8%, 2.1%, and 4.2%, respectively, in their last reported quarters.

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