Analysts Anticipate Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) Will Announce Earnings of $1.25 Per Share

Wall Street brokerages forecast that Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) will announce earnings per share (EPS) of $1.25 for the current quarter, Zacks reports. Ten analysts have made estimates for Microsoft’s earnings. The lowest EPS estimate is $1.21 and the highest is $1.32. Microsoft reported earnings of $1.14 per share during the same quarter last year, which would indicate a positive year over year growth rate of 9.6%. The firm is expected to announce its next earnings results on Wednesday, October 23rd.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Microsoft will report full-year earnings of $5.23 per share for the current year, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.13 to $5.41. For the next fiscal year, analysts anticipate that the company will post earnings of $5.90 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.53 to $6.27. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share averages are an average based on a survey of analysts that follow Microsoft.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, July 18th. The software giant reported $1.37 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.21 by $0.16. Microsoft had a return on equity of 39.26% and a net margin of 31.18%. The firm had revenue of $33.72 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $32.80 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $1.13 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 12.1% compared to the same quarter last year.

Several brokerages recently commented on MSFT. Credit Suisse Group set a $155.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, September 4th. DZ Bank restated a “buy” rating on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Friday, July 19th. Jefferies Financial Group set a $93.00 price target on shares of Microsoft and gave the stock a “sell” rating in a research report on Friday, July 19th. Stifel Nicolaus lifted their price target on shares of Microsoft from $150.00 to $155.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, July 19th. Finally, Raymond James lifted their price target on shares of Microsoft from $160.00 to $163.00 and gave the stock a “strong-buy” rating in a research report on Friday, July 19th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, twenty-six have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $149.21.

In other news, insider Frank H. Brod sold 4,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $141.05, for a total transaction of $564,200.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 64,152 shares in the company, valued at approximately $9,048,639.60. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CEO Satya Nadella sold 99,837 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, September 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $137.20, for a total transaction of $13,697,636.40. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 1,124,339 shares in the company, valued at $154,259,310.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 318,757 shares of company stock worth $43,735,918. Corporate insiders own 1.38% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of MSFT. Nuveen Asset Management LLC grew its holdings in shares of Microsoft by 2,651.8% during the 2nd quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 67,353,275 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $9,022,645,000 after acquiring an additional 64,905,685 shares in the last quarter. Lunia Capital LP grew its holdings in shares of Microsoft by 9,650.2% during the 4th quarter. Lunia Capital LP now owns 17,036,540 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $17,037,000 after acquiring an additional 16,861,809 shares in the last quarter. Thoroughbred Financial Services LLC grew its holdings in shares of Microsoft by 13,479.6% during the 2nd quarter. Thoroughbred Financial Services LLC now owns 8,726,283 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $872,628,000 after acquiring an additional 8,662,023 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Microsoft by 1.3% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 613,005,516 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $82,118,218,000 after acquiring an additional 7,724,483 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Edgewood Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Microsoft during the 2nd quarter valued at $620,230,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.16% of the company’s stock.

NASDAQ:MSFT traded up $1.69 during midday trading on Friday, hitting $137.97. 8,336,271 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 24,066,844. Microsoft has a one year low of $93.96 and a one year high of $142.37. The company has a market capitalization of $1,052.77 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.05, a P/E/G ratio of 2.38 and a beta of 1.22. The business has a 50-day moving average price of $137.14 and a two-hundred day moving average price of $131.20. The company has a current ratio of 2.53, a quick ratio of 2.50 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.71.

Microsoft declared that its board has authorized a stock repurchase program on Wednesday, September 18th that permits the company to buyback $40.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the software giant to repurchase up to 3.8% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are often an indication that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 12th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, November 21st will be given a dividend of $0.51 per share. This represents a $2.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.48%. This is a boost from Microsoft’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.46. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 20th. Microsoft’s payout ratio is presently 38.74%.

About Microsoft

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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