I explained it in another post, but I'll explain it here too. If they lose the ability to spin off VMW shares tax free, they will owe taxes on the shares, just like anyone who buys and sells a security. They purchased VMW for $650 million, so if they have to pay taxes on their profits, the bill could approach $10 billion, as on paper they currently have approximately $27 billion in profits.
I never said realized. EMC bought VMW for $650 million. Their stake is currently worth $28 billion. Their paper profit is just under $27 billion, counting the shares they purchased on the open market.
This is your spin-off thing that your had brought up earlier, but not the more ridiculous $28B REALIZED profit that you just mentioned, when you responded to the around $1B purchase of VMW shares.
They own more shares to keep above 80%. They have to stay above 80% to maintain tax-free status for a spin off, and they have to buy shares to keep up with VMW's increased share count because of stock option exercises and share grants.
There is a reason for the purchasing that EMC has done. Except that EMC has for years been subject of take over talks.. Something is on the horizon, just be prepared. Your zeal is admirable, but maybe for once misguided.
The chance of this is very low, but much higher than the so-called spin-off，when EMC is eager to own 80% of VMware.
When VMW was trading around this level a couple of years ago, EMC had mentioned a few times that it had no intention to sell more shares. It certainly keeps its promise. Instead, it bought back well over 5 million shares.