Apple To Place 98 Billion Where?

| About: Apple Inc. (AAPL)
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Where oh where will the "Empire" place its pile of money? This weekend Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) announced that Monday they will tell us where they are putting it. This highly anticipated announcement will make most folks very happy (I believe).

Many shareholders have wondered for weeks and months where the pile of cash will go. Many folks not in the game quickly got into it with hopes that the money would be returned to them. Some believe this is one of the reasons for the stock's monstrous recent climb. So where on the Monopoly board does the pile of cash land? Community Chest (Dividend) as many hope it will?

I am here to put my own personal odds (as I have done before in other articles) on the top 3 choices of where I think Apple will announce on Monday the money will end up. As always, these are for entertainment purposes only:

Dividend: 1-1

Seems to be the most likely solution. It gives instant money back to the loyal shareholders and I am sure it will be substantial if they decide to go this route. It will quiet down those demanding it, which makes public opinion of them just that much more favorable.

The only question (in my eyes since I think this is more than likely) is when will it happen? Though they may make every shareholder happy by announcing such a move, they do not have to make it happen overnight or even in the next few months.

In the end, I believe they will do the right thing, which makes this the most likely choice, and they will pay it out somewhat quickly as well.

Stock Buyback: 3-1

Seems like a good thing for shareholders and it will also drive the price up even higher, but this does not give a "tangible" asset back to the shareholders. Though the stock value will be increased by a buyback, most folks live by "cash is king" and the best way to live by that is having the dividend check in hand. Not the worst thing in the world if it does happen, but I personally say "Show me the Money", and Now!

Acquisition: 10-1

I doubt they will announce an acquisition on such a hastily called conference call. Although I do not think it is such a bad idea, I am sure shareholders would disagree with me on this. They want the money in their hands via a buyback or dividend and an acquisition would not do that for them. I did write about Apple acquiring Sirius (NASDAQ:SIRI) in my very first article a few months ago, and since they have the cash and have little or no presence in our cars (yet) it still could be possible. But something like that could make Apple TOO big and cause more headaches (see Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) past) to make it worth it.

There also have been rumblings about Dropbox (worth about $4B) and maybe even Time Warner (NYSE:TWX) or Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) but both are very long shots in my eyes, especially Amazon (at 80B+).

Any other ideas? Would be happy to hear your thoughts, though I think it is very likely we hear about a dividend in the coming months, so I think the angry voices (it seems) will be answered!

Disclosure: I am long SIRI.