Apple Is Not in the Market for Game-Changing Acquisitions

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Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has emerged as the most formidable cash cow on Wall Street. The company generated $22.7 billion in cash flow from operations during its latest quarterly period, ended December 28. In all, Apple closed out its first-quarter 2014 with $158.8 billion in cash and investments above $95.5 billion in total liabilities on the books.

Certainly, the catcalls to return larger portions of Apple capital back to shareholders reached a crescendo alongside Carl Icahn’s recent arrival as a major shareholder. Going forward, Apple investors beating the drum for a major acquisition out of the suddenly conservative Cupertino may be left highly disappointed. Apple is not in the market for game-changing acquisitions.

The Web 2.0 bubble

In recent years, Apple and ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM) have largely jostled back and forth with each other for the ultimate designation as the world’s largest corporation. Wall Street traders have currently applied a $476.6 billion market capitalization price tag to Apple. For the sake of comparison, Exxon now operates with $409.3 billion in market capitalization. In 2009, Exxon closed out a deal of its own to buy out XTO Energy.

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