The company announced it would use some of its $100 billion in cash to fund a $2.65 quarterly dividend, good for a yield of about 1.8%, and Apple also will buy back $10 billion in stock.
The news was enough to drive Apple shares up 2.7%, closing above the $600 mark for the first time. At $601, AAPL stock has gained almost 50% since the start of the year and 80% in the past 52 weeks.
Meanwhile, Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) also hit a more modest milestone — $10 per share — but then immediately backtracked and actually ended up down more than 2% by the end of Monday’s trading. Bank of America had been riding the momentum of last week’s “stress test” results release. BofA passed, and although it did not announce a dividend hike — a la JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) and Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) — investors still bumped up shares by about 15% since then.
No. 3 U.S. telecom Sprint (NYSE:S) also had a long day, losing 4.5% on continued rumors that the company could eventually file for bankruptcy following a serious blow to its ability to provide 4G wireless service. Sprint recently ended its deal with Lightsquared, which would have allowed the company to provide 4G-LTE service. As it stands now, Sprint now will have to build out such a network itself — an undertaking that requires both time and money, which Sprint is short on.
- Frontline (NYSE:FRO): Up 8.2% (63 cents) to $8.28.
- Lions Gate Entertainment (NYSE:LGF): Up 7.9% ($1.04) to $14.25.
- U.S. Steel (NYSE:X): Up 6.4% ($1.89) to $31.64.
- KB Home (NYSE:KBH): Down 6.8% (87 cents) to $11.89.
- Yingli Green Energy (NYSE:YGE): Down 5.5% (22 cents) to $3.81.
- Youku.com (NASDAQ:YOKU): Down 3.6% (97 cents) to $26.09.