With the latest announcements of Q2’s results, the market was surprised by a new cash king in town: Google‘s parent company Alphabet. After a decade as the company with the biggest financial reserves, Apple’s holdings of cash and marketable securities have decreased from $163 billion at the end of 2017 to $102 billion.
Alphabet, on the other hand, has been on the rise and reported financial reserves of $117 billion during the last quarter, becoming the global champion in cash pile. According to the Financial Times, the current scenario is delicate for Alphabet, a company that has been facing scrutiny in Washington and has recently paid a billion-worth antitrust fine – and it is due to this vulnerability that the company is choosing to retain the revenues generated.
However, this choice of keeping large amounts of liquid assets, instead of rewarding shareholders, tends to dissatisfy investors, and this can be a reason which explains why Alphabet has overcome Apple: during the last year and a half, Tim Cook‘s company has spent $122 billion on buying back stock and paying dividends, after being criticized by investors regarding the practices of holding on to its stockpile.