Zacks: Brokerages Anticipate Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) to Post $1.32 EPS

Equities analysts expect Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) to post earnings of $1.32 per share for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks reports. Ten analysts have provided estimates for Microsoft’s earnings, with the lowest EPS estimate coming in at $1.30 and the highest estimate coming in at $1.35. Microsoft reported earnings of $1.10 per share during the same quarter last year, which suggests a positive year over year growth rate of 20%. The business is scheduled to report its next earnings results after the market closes on Wednesday, January 29th.

On average, analysts expect that Microsoft will report full year earnings of $5.36 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.23 to $5.61. For the next fiscal year, analysts forecast that the company will report earnings of $6.02 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.59 to $6.35. Zacks’ earnings per share calculations are an average based on a survey of research analysts that that provide coverage for Microsoft.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last released its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 23rd. The software giant reported $1.38 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.24 by $0.14. The business had revenue of $33.06 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $32.24 billion. Microsoft had a return on equity of 39.14% and a net margin of 31.66%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 13.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $1.14 EPS.

Several analysts recently issued reports on the company. Stifel Nicolaus boosted their price target on Microsoft from to in a research note on Tuesday. Cowen restated an “outperform” rating and issued a $180.00 price target (up from $165.00) on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Thursday, January 9th. Barclays set a $168.00 price target on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, November 1st. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Microsoft from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $147.00 price target for the company in a research note on Friday, October 25th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group restated a “buy” rating and issued a $151.00 price target on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Wednesday, October 23rd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating, thirty-three have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $168.80.

MSFT opened at $166.72 on Tuesday. The business has a fifty day simple moving average of $158.58 and a 200 day simple moving average of $144.83. The company has a market capitalization of $1,271.88 billion, a PE ratio of 31.40, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.60 and a beta of 1.23. Microsoft has a 1 year low of $102.17 and a 1 year high of $168.19. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.69, a current ratio of 2.85 and a quick ratio of 2.81.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 12th. Investors of record on Thursday, February 20th will be given a dividend of $0.51 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, February 19th. This represents a $2.04 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.22%. Microsoft’s dividend payout ratio is currently 42.95%.

In related news, CMO Christopher C. Capossela sold 2,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, October 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $142.89, for a total transaction of $357,225.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief marketing officer now directly owns 133,944 shares in the company, valued at approximately $19,139,258.16. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, EVP Jean Philippe Courtois sold 11,345 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $145.06, for a total value of $1,645,705.70. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 611,855 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $88,755,686.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders have sold 53,845 shares of company stock valued at $7,974,356. 1.39% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 1.3% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 613,005,516 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $82,118,218,000 after buying an additional 7,724,483 shares during the period. Nuveen Asset Management LLC increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 2,651.8% during the second 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 during the last quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 2.3% during the third quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 32,812,008 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $4,561,852,000 after acquiring an additional 746,243 shares during the last quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 1.7% during the third quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. now owns 29,247,767 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $4,066,317,000 after acquiring an additional 495,737 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 1.1% during the third quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 23,906,968 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $3,323,786,000 after acquiring an additional 267,643 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 71.86% of the company’s stock.

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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