U.S. companies have started to spend their record high piles of cash, but most won't be using it to boost hiring.
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Since the credit crisis, U.S. companies have collected about $940 billion in cash. Per-share profit surged 36% in 2010, the biggest jump since 1988, and companies cut capital expenditures 26% in 2009 to compensate for the ailing economy.
Some of the biggest cash hoarders as of the end of 2010 include Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) with $40.2 billion cash, Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) with nearly $40 billion and Google Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOG) with nearly $35 billion.