Don’t look now but Cisco is on a tear! Ok. That may be a stretch. The stock is up about 3% in the past four days. But the mere fact that Cisco’s stock is riding a four-day winning streak is worth noting.
Cisco hit a 52-week low on Thursday. It is a stock that investors love to hate this year. It’s no longer the super-sexy growth company it once was. Upstarts like Juniper and F5 have stolen its thunder in that department. But the company announced on Friday that it would soon pay a 6-cent per share quarterly dividend.
And that got investors mildly excited. Some shareholders have been clamoring for John Chambers to start parting with some of Cisco’s mountain of caysh for years. Cisco had resisted, using the time-honored excuse that many other techs with squeaky-clean balance sheets have, namely that they have better uses for their money than doling out quarterly checks to the widows and orphans crowd.
But Cisco may not have better things to spend that caysh on. The thought of Cisco taking on another acquisition probably scares most investors since Cisco has already been a shopaholic: Linksys, Scientific-Atlanta, WebEx, Pure Digital (owns Flip) & Tandberg — just to name a few.
So now Cisco has made the bold step to admit it’s a mature blue chip company. And instead of shying away from that, it might be something to embrace. Cisco’s dividend works out to 24 cents a year, a yield of 1.4%. That’s not too shabby for a first-time payout.
I’ll probably look more at Cisco in tomorrow’s Buzz over on CNNMoney proper. But definitely would love to hear some thoughts from Tumblr followers here. Has Cisco bottomed and are better times ahead or is it still going to be dead money for a long time? — Paul