Apple Mulling Hulu Bid, Alwaleed Says Company Is Fine Without Jobs (AAPL, NFLX, DIS, NWSA, CMCSA, NOK, HPQ, RIMM, MMI)
Shares of tech juggernaut Apple (AAPL) are up 1% today, adding to a 7% gain over the past week due in part to speculation the company may use some of its massive cash hoard to acquire online video service Hulu. The news was reported by Bloomberg News, which cited two people with knowledge of the situation. Apple’s jump is helping the Personal Computer and Smartphone Stocks Index to a 0.4% gain.
Apple, which has $76.2 billion in cash and other securities, sitting on its balance sheet has come under fire from investors that, despite the impressive appreciation in Apple shares, they would like to see the company deploy some of that cash either in the form of dividends or acquisitions. Co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs has previously said he would prefer to keep Apple’s powder dry while waiting for potential opportunities.
Buying Hulu would put Apple in direct competition with the likes of Netflix (NFLX) and Hulu’s owners Walt Disney Company (DIS), News Corp (NWSA) and Comcast (CMCSA) and the price tag for the company could reach $2 billion, Bloomberg reported.
Speaking of Jobs, Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal al Saud said in an interview with CNN that the company “will survive” without the CEO that has been so intimately linked to the company’s success and is viewed as a visionary in Silicon Valley. Prince Alwaleed is an Apple shareholder and said it is clear the company has been discussing succession.
Shares of downtrodden Finnish handset maker Nokia (NOK) are off 3% on news the company is losing market share in China, the world’s largest mobile phone market, due to slumping prices. Nokia’s second-quarter shipments in China slid by 11.3 million from the first quarter and 41% from the second quarter of 2010. Nokia had 19.1% market share in China in the first quarter compared with 23.5% a year earlier, Bloomberg reported, citing Gartner Inc.
Investors can track the Personal Computer and Smartphone Stocks Index for performance trends and a suite of other metrics at tickerspy.com.
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