US firms' cash holdings hit record $2.15T in 2020: Moody's

Top 5 firms Apple, Microsoft, Alphabet, Amazon, Facebook held $611B cash, 27% of total, says rating agency

Övünç Kutlu   | 09.06.2021
US firms' cash holdings hit record $2.15T in 2020: Moody's


US-based non-financial companies' cash holdings climbed to a record $2.15 trillion at the end of 2020, up 32% from 2019, Moody's said in a statement on Tuesday.

The global rating agency said the technology sector still holds the most cash among American industries.

The top five cash holders remained US tech firms Apple, Microsoft, Google’s parent company Alphabet, Amazon, and Facebook, which held a combined $611 billion, or 27% of the total corporate cash balance at the end of 2020, it said.

The technology sector had the most cash with $888 billion, or 41%, of the total, it added.

The healthcare/pharmaceuticals and manufacturing sectors followed with combined cash holdings of more than $530 billion, according to Moody's.

"After falling for two straight years following tax law changes, the amount of cash held by US non-financial companies surged during the pandemic," Richard Lane, a Moody's Senior Vice President, said in the statement.

"The increase reflects record cash flow generation following capital spending, lower share buybacks, less spending on acquisitions and more borrowing to bolster liquidity or cover upcoming debt maturities," he added.

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