There are two reasons why there could be a dividend announcement made in 2018. At times, they are part of senior management and are compensated through shares, and at other times, they are regular employees who purchase more shares using personal funds. Microsoft executives yesterday called the general PC market ''still pretty soft.'' The current growth rates are meager compared with the high-growth days of the late 1990's, when gains were more than 20 percent annually, but the fourth-quarter numbers appeared to be an encouraging sign. In contrast, a company with very volatile earnings will not have a dividend policy. This includes the likes of Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA), and Visa Inc (NYSE:V). In other words, Apple investors should expect plenty more dividend increases in the years ahead. Which isn’t to say that a dividend-paying company never holds debt. During Jobs' second tenure at Apple from 1997 to 2012, the tech giant didn't pay a single dividend, even as its cash hoard ballooned to over $50 billion in 2011. Date Rec. The Ascent is The Motley Fool's new personal finance brand devoted to helping you live a richer life. Technology is moving extremely fast and you don't want to miss anything, sign up to our newsletter and you will get all the latest tech news straight into your inbox! Microsoft also managed to collect increased revenues in the PC markets by selling more expensive professional versions of Windows and prodding corporate customers to agree to license regular upgrades of its Office productivity programs. This ratio is also below the industry average, meaning Edwards LifeSciences has a superior balance sheet, as well as that paying a dividend is more than feasible. Microsoft has weathered the slump in personal computer sales that began in late 2000 and lasted into the first half of last year. You would also have to pay an additional commission fee when selling the shares. But a report yesterday by IDC, a research firm, suggested that a gradual recovery was under way. This signals to the markets that the debt is being strategically used to grow the business. In other words, a company pays a dividend because it can afford to. That’s because if it were cut or eliminated, investors and traders would sell the shares, likely causing the stock to trade lower. But by 2012, and after Jobs had passed the reigns to Tim Cook, Apple finally reinitiated its dividend, making it the company's first dividend since 1995. Another reason for a dividend is because company insiders want to see a return and as little volatility of their personal capital as possible. ''This is a surprise, but it mostly reflects the economics of the business,'' said Charles di Bona, an analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein. Market data powered by FactSet and Web Financial Group. Worldwide PC shipments rose 4.9 percent in the fourth quarter of 2002, and shipments in the United States rose 6.6 percent in the quarter, helped by solid consumer sales in the holiday season. Here's a look at Apple's dividend and its history. The European Commission could fine Microsoft up to 10 percent of its revenues, or more than $3 billion, and force the company to share technical information with competitors. Hewlett-Packard, which has a large consumer PC business, nudged ahead of Dell Computer to regain the lead in worldwide market share, according to the IDC figures.
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