FORTUNE -- There is no shortage of theories why Apple (AAPL) -- already at a 453-day low Tuesday -- fell another $28.13 in mid-day trading Wednesday to touch $398.11, wiping out all of 2012's gains.
Among the reasons we've heard:
Apple's market value has now dropped $288 billion since last September, which is greater than the gross national product of all but 34 countries.
There is, however, an upside to a down day like this, if you care to see it that way.
Investors who have been waiting for Tim Cook to raise Apple's dividend can take comfort in the fact that the market has done it for them. At $398.11 a share, Apple's current dividend of $10.60 returns a yield of better than 2.66%.
Which these days, isn't bad.
Likely to exceed the tech sector's average 1.2% dividend, driving share price up $100
The institutions that hold 70% of Apple's (AAPL) shares lobbied Steve Jobs for years to put some of his company's rapidly growing cash hoard in their hands.
Now that his successor is talking openly about the company's discussions to do just that, the sell-side analysts have started to calculate how big their share might be.
The latest to weigh in MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Feb 16, 2012 12:06 PM ET
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