Since 2012, Apple has been buying back its shares at an extraordinary rate, often exceeding $10 billion— and frequently approaching $20 billion— per quarter. Now that its stock has doubled across the last year, why is it continuing to snap up shares?
Since 2012, Apple has been buying back shares at the extraordinary rate of around $10 billion per quarter. A year ago it picked up the pace to around $20 billion per quarter. After a reprieve last winter, the company has resumed its buyback frenzy with its largest-ever quarterly funding: $24 billion in Q2 followed by $17 billion in the most recent June quarter. Here's why. [The original version of this article contained an error regarding the dates of Apple's quarterly buybacks.]
Following a $23.5 billion buyback in the March quarter, Apple discreetly bought up another $20 billion of its own shares off the open market in the June quarter, taking advantage of the continued, vapidly ignorant noise generated by analysts and financial news sites who bizarrely wondered aloud for months when and how Apple might "kill" the most advanced, commercially successful smartphone it has ever produced.