Brokerages Expect Microsoft Co. (MSFT) Will Post Earnings of $1.00 Per Share

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Equities analysts predict that Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) will report $1.00 earnings per share (EPS) for the current fiscal quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Eleven analysts have issued estimates for Microsoft’s earnings, with the lowest EPS estimate coming in at $0.97 and the highest estimate coming in at $1.01. Microsoft posted earnings of $0.95 per share during the same quarter last year, which suggests a positive year over year growth rate of 5.3%. The firm is scheduled to report its next earnings report on Thursday, April 25th.

On average, analysts expect that Microsoft will report full year earnings of $4.41 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $4.32 to $4.48. For the next financial year, analysts forecast that the company will post earnings of $4.93 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $4.45 to $5.17. Zacks’ EPS calculations are an average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that cover Microsoft.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, January 30th. The software giant reported $1.10 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.09 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $32.47 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $32.53 billion. Microsoft had a return on equity of 39.52% and a net margin of 28.31%. The business’s revenue was up 12.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.96 EPS.

Several research firms have recently commented on MSFT. Credit Suisse Group set a $125.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Sunday, January 27th. UBS Group set a $125.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, January 31st. Nomura reduced their target price on Microsoft from $115.00 to $113.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, January 31st. Citigroup reiterated a “neutral” rating and set a $110.00 target price (down from $114.00) on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Thursday, January 31st. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $124.00 target price on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Monday, December 17th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, thirty-one have issued a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $122.51.

In other Microsoft news, CMO Christopher C. Capossela sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, March 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $110.46, for a total value of $552,300.00. Following the sale, the chief marketing officer now directly owns 156,866 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $17,327,418.36. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, CEO Satya Nadella sold 267,466 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, February 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $106.01, for a total value of $28,354,070.66. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 1,746,854 shares in the company, valued at $185,183,992.54. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 333,667 shares of company stock worth $35,657,016 over the last ninety days. 1.38% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Vanguard Group Inc grew its holdings in Microsoft by 1.6% during the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 577,877,949 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $66,091,902,000 after acquiring an additional 8,820,439 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in Microsoft by 0.6% during the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 507,006,157 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $51,496,613,000 after acquiring an additional 3,257,514 shares during the period. FMR LLC grew its holdings in Microsoft by 5.2% during the fourth quarter. FMR LLC now owns 254,905,697 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $25,890,773,000 after acquiring an additional 12,660,256 shares during the period. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund grew its holdings in Microsoft by 9,587.0% during the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 169,992,326 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $1,674,000 after acquiring an additional 168,237,479 shares during the period. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC grew its holdings in Microsoft by 7.6% during the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 100,083,231 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $10,148,710,000 after acquiring an additional 7,107,312 shares during the period. 72.12% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Shares of Microsoft stock traded up $1.32 on Friday, hitting $115.91. 54,029,181 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 29,249,186. The stock has a market cap of $881.63 billion, a P/E ratio of 29.87, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.09 and a beta of 1.21. The company has a current ratio of 3.12, a quick ratio of 3.08 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82. Microsoft has a 52-week low of $87.08 and a 52-week high of $117.25.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 13th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, May 15th will be given a $0.46 dividend. This represents a $1.84 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.59%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, May 15th. Microsoft’s dividend payout ratio is presently 47.42%.

Microsoft Company Profile

Microsoft Corporation develops, licenses, and supports software, services, devices, and solutions worldwide. Its company's Productivity and Business Processes segment offers Office 365 commercial products and services, such as Office, Exchange, SharePoint, Skype for Business, Microsoft Teams, and related Client Access Licenses (CALs); Office 365 consumer services, including Skype, Outlook.com, and OneDrive; LinkedIn online professional network; and Dynamics business solutions comprising financial management, enterprise resource planning, customer relationship management, supply chain management, and analytics applications for small and medium businesses, large organizations, and divisions of enterprises.

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