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Technology stocks utterly dominate this list of cash-rich companies. Microsoft ( MSFT) is another example of one. The Redmond, Wash.-based firm currently boasts a cash and investment position of $63.04 billion, offset by an $11.94 billion debt load. While it may have been unfathomable that dominant Microsoft would be playing a distant second fiddle to Apple among the sector's richest firms just decade ago, Microsoft's cash position is nothing to scoff at.

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While Microsoft has been ceding market share to Apple's Macintosh platform over the years, its Windows software still solidly the dominant operating system in the computer business. That success -- and the success of other software packages like Office and its enterprise products -- continues to be a cash cow for Microsoft, even if forays into other businesses (music players and cell phones, for instance) haven't been nearly as successful.

There's been a lot of speculation that Microsoft may buy beleaguered Finnish handset maker Nokia ( NOK) with some of its cash, but I think that's unlikely, and even less good for Microsoft shareholders. While a partnership with Nokia is very beneficial for Microsoft in getting its mobile phone platform on retail shelves, MSFT could build phones for a lot cheaper than the price that Nokia would fetch at a discount right now.

A nearly 3% dividend and a wildly lucrative Windows business should keep Microsoft investors happy for the foreseeable future as long as CEO Steve Ballmer doesn't make any ill-advised acquisitions.

I also featured Microsoft, which shows up on a list of 5 Stocks to Store Away for 5 Years, recently in " 5 Big Stocks Ready to Slingshot Higher."

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