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Cash is king, unless you are in Japan. One successful trading strategy has recently lost its luster, thanks to the Bank of Japan’s never-ending obsession with negative interest rates.

When a global recession looms, investors tend to hug stocks that pay handsome dividends. Cash rewards also have appeal at corporate headquarters. Since the collapse of Lehman Brothers, S&P 500 companies have shelled out as much as 35 percent of their spending to buy back shares — even at the expense of capital investments — propelling the U.S. market to a record bull run.

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