After Apple's dividend announcement last month, eyes are now on Google (NAS: GOOG) for whether a shareholder payout is in its future. As of the latest quarter, Google has more cash as a percentage of market cap than its five largest competitors, including Apple; its cash holdings stand at $44.6 billion.
In fact, Google is the only tech company with a market cap above $125 billion that doesn't pay a regular dividend, making investors consider whether now is the time to expect a steady payout. Google's stock has fallen 1.5% this year, so a significant dividend yield would be welcomed by investors.
According to Bloomberg, Google is adding $2 billion to $3 billion in cash each quarter, although its recent purchase of Motorola MobilityHoldings (NYS: MMI) for $12.5 billion will be a liquidity drain.
Google's CEO Larry Page was asked about Apple's dividend announcement last week, and he responded, "I think Apple has more cash than we do."
Business section: Investing ideas
Do you think it's time that Google offered its investors a steady payout, or does it have better uses for its cash?
Below we list the largest tech stocks that pay sizable dividends. Do you think Google should join them? (Click here to access free, interactive tools to analyze these ideas.)
1. Microsoft (NAS: MSFT) : Develops, licenses, and supports a range of software products and services for various computing devices worldwide. The company has a market cap of $254.66 billion and stock priced at $30.98. Microsoft's dividend yield is 2.64% with a payout ratio of 25.77%.
2. China Mobile: Provides mobile telecommunications and related services primarily in mainland China. The company has a market cap of $216.85 billion and stock priced at $54.73. China Mobile's dividend yield is 3.78% with a payout ratio of 43.55%.
3. Intel (NAS: INTC) : Engages in the design, manufacture, and sale of integrated circuits for computing and communications industries worldwide. The company has a market cap of $139.47 billion and stock priced at $28.48. Intel's dividend yield is 3.02% with a payout ratio of 31.29%.
4. Siemens (NYS: SI) : Operates in the industry, energy, and health care sectors worldwide. The company has a market cap of $87.21 billion and stock priced at $96.36. Siemens' dividend yield is 4.08% with a payout ratio of 40.81%.
5. Nippon Telegraph & Telephone: Provides telecommunications services to residential and business customers in Japan. The company has a market cap of $59.17 billion and stock priced at $22.33. NTT's dividend yield is 2.77% with a payout ratio of 40.92%.
Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the stocks mentioned above. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research.
At the time thisarticle was published Kapitall's Alexander Crawford does not own any of the shares mentioned above. The Motley Fool owns shares of Intel, Microsoft, and Google. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Microsoft, China Mobile, Google, and Intel, as well as creating a bull call spread position in Microsoft. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.
Copyright © 1995 - 2012 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.