Definition of Cash and Cash Equivalents

What does the term "cash and cash equivalents" mean? What is meant by "cash and cash equivalents"?

You have likely come across the term "cash and cash equivalents" while reading about a company's earnings report.

Apple, for instance, has nearly $100 billion in "cash and cash equivalents" - that's an incredible pile of money.

Definition of Cash and Cash EquivalentsThe question is - what does the term actually mean?

"Cash and cash equivalents" includes the following:

-checks, money orders, banker's drafts on hand

"Cash equivalents" also includes short-term, extremely liquid investments that are easily convertible into a known amount of cash. For instance, a very short-term US Treasury security would be considered a "cash equivalent" because it is so easily transferable into cold, hard cash.

-- Articles That Mention Cash and Cash Equivalents:

Cash Rich: Apple Has Over $80 Billion in Cash and Cash Equivalents

Corporate America Is Swimming In Cash

Highlights From the 2009 Berkshire Hathaway Annual Shareholder's Letter

Will "Baby Boomers" Re-Enter The Stock Market?

Citadel's Kensington Global Strategies Fund, Wellington LLC Fund Have Their Counterparty Credit Ratings Cut by S&P