Re: Downward share price
In the real world, quite possibly, but in the paranoid triplethink trading universe, it could be seen as a dyke-plugging exercise to stop all the value being drained out of the stock. Perceptions may vary, according to quality and quantity of the marching powder deployed by brokers. The only real event that takes place is a diminution of Apple's cashpile, with the amount spent being replaced by stocks, which may well go tits up faster than the dollar.
This might be seen as a risky strategy, when a company bets on its own share price to stave off downward market pressure. Apple can afford to lose a few billion here and there, but another 100 bux off the share price will see bodies falling from the executive floors. The dividend payout works on a similar principle. It's a sweetener for shareholders who've just seen a huge chunk of their virtual cashpile go south. Bubbles burst, haircuts go viral.