Apple could make money by bailing out Greece

“That Apple should buy Greece with all the useless cash it has on hand is just a joke that won’t go away,” Leonid Bershidsky writes for Bloomberg View. “Yet it’s true that, if big American corporations and European politicians had any imagination, they could probably engineer a bailout for the nearly bankrupt country on terms that would benefit everyone.”

“Back in 2012, an investor attending Apple’s general meeting asked Tim Cook, the chief executive officer, if he’d ever considered using the company’s growing cash stash — $97.6 billion at that point — to acquire Greece. ‘We’ve looked into many things,’ but not that, Cook replied,” Bershidsky writes. “So everyone had a laugh and moved on… Apple, in the meantime, more than doubled its hoard, which now amounts $194 billion in cash and equivalents. The company has been paying generous dividends and buying back stock, but the cash pile keeps growing. There’s no way to invest it all.”

“Apple, Microsoft, Google, Pfizer and Cisco have stockpiled $439 billion,” Bershidsky writes. “Greece needs about 190 billion euros ($212 billion) to bring down its debt to the manageable level of 70 percent of gross domestic product. That’s about 48 percent of the five companies’ combined cash stash… In exchange for less than half of their cash — and just 13 percent more than it would cost to pay U.S. taxes — the companies would receive an indefinite, ironclad guarantee of low taxes on non-U.S. operations. Not a bad deal.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: There are lessons to be learned from Greece, lessons that would go unlearned if a white knight or group of white knights swooped in to save the day. And those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.


  1. A democracy can… only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy. — Elmer T. Peterson, December 9, 1951

    1. That is a good quote, but it has become worse than that. At this point money drives the two parties, so a minority, i.e. major corporations, can buy the government they want.

      Occasionally citizen friendly battles are still won, but only when a lot of money is raised to achieve that.

      Mostly corporations quietly get their way on huge unpublished trade agreements, riders on other bills, etc.

  2. As a stockholder I don’t think this would be good business. As for Greece changing direction on resolving their financial issues is like spiking an American football on the 50 yard line.

  3. Let’s see…loan $212B to a country that has already shown itself willing to unilaterally attempt to rewrite the existing bailout agreement? And this loan would, no doubt, be subordinate to the existing bailout agreement?

    If the rest of the European Union is reluctant or unwilling to loan more money to Greece, what makes someone think that it would be a good idea for the private sector to jump into that business?

    1. Wow! That’s a pretty disgusting comment there dude!
      If it wasn’t for Greece inventing civilisation and advancing in all major sciences you would still be inside caves trying to make noises desperate to communicate with the monkeys. Now go back to your filthy British pub and get drunk on cheep lager, enjoy your shitty life…

      1. There is no truth to the rumour that the Greeks invented laziness but they sure have capitalized on it lately. Look at Japan: no resources, import everything, manufacture massively and ship it back to the world. Greeks: not so much.

    1. Actually, Greece’s debt is incredibly expensive. This is paying a lot and getting little in return. It would be like living with a dire gambling addict. You KNOW they’re going to go blow any dough they get their hands on. They need a lot of help and money is NOT it.

  4. Any entity that bails out Greece will be throwing good money after bad.

    That said, it’s funny to see how awesome American companies have more money and power than many actual nations. No wonder there is so much anti-American pretense on the internet: Jealousy doth stingeth greatly.

  5. oh hell no.
    Examine the state of the Greek culture and you’ll run away screaming. Don’t touch that. They have to dig themselves out of the hole they dug for themselves. Stay away. Their problem.

  6. “the companies would receive an indefinite, ironclad guarantee of low taxes on non-U.S. operations. Not a bad deal.”

    . . . AND THE EU would bring suit against both Greece and Apple for making a legal tax reduction agreement in a manner like the EU is trying to throw on Ireland!

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.