Apple announces dividend and stock buy back   ◆

Apple PR:

Subject to declaration by the Board of Directors, the Company plans to initiate a quarterly dividend of $2.65 per share sometime in the fourth quarter of its fiscal 2012, which begins on July 1, 2012.

There’s also a $10 billion share repurchase program.

“We have used some of our cash to make great investments in our business through increased research and development, acquisitions, new retail store openings, strategic prepayments and capital expenditures in our supply chain, and building out our infrastructure. You’ll see more of all of these in the future,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “Even with these investments, we can maintain a war chest for strategic opportunities and have plenty of cash to run our business. So we are going to initiate a dividend and share repurchase program.”

Translation: Our money printing press is oiled up and ready to go.

One interesting note from the conference call: Apple will pay dividends on unvested Restrcted Stock Units, but Tim Cook specifically requested he not receive this benefit on his 1,000,000+ million RSUs. That’s a lot of money he’s giving up.