Sandy Spring Bank increased its position in Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) by 1.1% during the 3rd quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 253,070 shares of the software giant’s stock after buying an additional 2,847 shares during the quarter. Microsoft comprises about 2.7% of Sandy Spring Bank’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 6th biggest position. Sandy Spring Bank’s holdings in Microsoft were worth $35,184,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Several other institutional investors and hedge funds have also recently modified their holdings of the stock. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA increased its holdings in Microsoft by 274.5% in the 2nd quarter. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA now owns 191 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $26,000 after purchasing an additional 140 shares in the last quarter. Krane Funds Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Microsoft during the second quarter valued at about $26,000. Centaurus Financial Inc. grew its stake in shares of Microsoft by 21.1% during the first quarter. Centaurus Financial Inc. now owns 3,222 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $27,000 after acquiring an additional 561 shares in the last quarter. Selective Wealth Management Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Microsoft during the third quarter valued at about $36,000. Finally, Atwater Malick LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Microsoft during the third quarter valued at about $37,000. 72.22% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Shares of MSFT stock opened at $147.31 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.69, a quick ratio of 2.81 and a current ratio of 2.85. Microsoft Co. has a one year low of $93.96 and a one year high of $147.57. The company’s 50-day simple moving average is $140.42 and its 200-day simple moving average is $135.48. The stock has a market capitalization of $1,114.64 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.28, a PEG ratio of 2.29 and a beta of 1.23.
Microsoft declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback program on Wednesday, September 18th that allows the company to repurchase $40.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the software giant to buy up to 3.8% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 12th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, November 21st will be given a dividend of $0.51 per share. This is a boost from Microsoft’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.46. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, November 20th. This represents a $2.04 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.38%. Microsoft’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 38.74%.
In other Microsoft news, EVP Jean Philippe Courtois sold 11,779 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $140.00, for a total value of $1,649,060.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 597,727 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $83,681,780. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, CAO Frank H. Brod sold 4,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, September 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $137.17, for a total transaction of $548,680.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 54,306 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,449,154.02. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 332,804 shares of company stock worth $45,823,569 in the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 1.39% of the company’s stock.
Several analysts have recently weighed in on the company. Argus raised their target price on Microsoft to $158.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 25th. Citigroup raised their target price on Microsoft from $152.00 to $155.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 24th. Morgan Stanley raised their target price on Microsoft from $155.00 to $157.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 24th. CIBC raised their target price on Microsoft from $145.00 to $160.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Friday, July 19th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Microsoft from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $147.00 target price for the company in a research note on Friday, October 25th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating, thirty have assigned a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. Microsoft currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $159.45.
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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