Microsoft (MSFT) Earning Somewhat Favorable Media Coverage, Analysis Shows

Headlines about Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) have trended somewhat positive this week, according to InfoTrie Sentiment Analysis. The research group ranks the sentiment of media coverage by monitoring more than 6,000 news and blog sources. The firm ranks coverage of companies on a scale of negative five to positive five, with scores closest to five being the most favorable. Microsoft earned a news impact score of 1.15 on their scale. InfoTrie also assigned news headlines about the software giant an news buzz score of 6 out of 10, meaning that recent media coverage is somewhat likely to have an effect on the company’s share price in the near future.

Here are some of the news stories that may have impacted Microsoft’s ranking:

NASDAQ MSFT traded down $2.18 during trading on Friday, reaching $109.57. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 32,010,198 shares, compared to its average volume of 42,567,596. The firm has a market capitalization of $862.07 billion, a P/E ratio of 28.24, a P/E/G ratio of 2.04 and a beta of 1.26. The company has a quick ratio of 2.85, a current ratio of 2.92 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.88. Microsoft has a one year low of $80.70 and a one year high of $116.18.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, October 24th. The software giant reported $1.14 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.96 by $0.18. Microsoft had a return on equity of 39.86% and a net margin of 16.38%. The business had revenue of $29.08 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $27.92 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.84 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 18.5% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, research analysts anticipate that Microsoft will post 4.39 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 13th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, November 15th will be issued a $0.46 dividend. This is a boost from Microsoft’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.42. This represents a $1.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.68%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, November 14th. Microsoft’s dividend payout ratio is presently 43.30%.

A number of analysts recently issued reports on the company. Credit Suisse Group reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $125.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Monday, September 10th. Nomura set a $118.00 price objective on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 20th. Wells Fargo & Co set a $120.00 price objective on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 20th. Sanford C. Bernstein set a $135.00 price objective on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 20th. Finally, Griffin Securities boosted their price objective on Microsoft from $119.00 to $124.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, July 20th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating, thirty-three have issued a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $121.88.

In other news, insider Frank H. Brod sold 20,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, October 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $107.70, for a total value of $2,154,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 66,676 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,181,005.20. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Satya Nadella sold 203,418 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, October 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $106.68, for a total value of $21,700,632.24. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 1,014,247 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $108,199,869.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 479,080 shares of company stock valued at $52,100,893 over the last quarter. Company insiders own 1.49% of the company’s stock.

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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 for businesses, 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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