Microsoft (MSFT) Given “Outperform” Rating at Wedbush

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Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)‘s stock had its “outperform” rating reiterated by equities researchers at Wedbush in a research note issued to investors on Thursday, The Fly reports. They currently have a $150.00 target price on the software giant’s stock, up from their previous target price of $140.00. Wedbush’s price objective would suggest a potential upside of 23.18% from the company’s current price.

A number of other analysts have also weighed in on the stock. Bank of America upgraded shares of Microsoft to a “buy” rating and reduced their price objective for the company from $150.00 to $140.00 in a research note on Monday, January 28th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Credit Suisse Group restated a “buy” rating on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Wednesday, January 2nd. Royal Bank of Canada restated a “buy” rating and set a $124.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Monday, January 21st. Nomura reduced their price objective on shares of Microsoft from $115.00 to $113.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, January 31st. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group restated a “buy” rating and set a $123.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Wednesday, January 23rd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating, thirty-one have assigned a buy rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the company. Microsoft presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $124.42.

NASDAQ:MSFT opened at $121.77 on Thursday. The stock has a market cap of $932.06 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 31.38, a PEG ratio of 2.22 and a beta of 1.22. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82, a current ratio of 3.12 and a quick ratio of 3.08. Microsoft has a fifty-two week low of $90.28 and a fifty-two week high of $121.85.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 30th. The software giant reported $1.10 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.09 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $32.47 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $32.53 billion. Microsoft had a net margin of 28.31% and a return on equity of 39.52%. Microsoft’s revenue was up 12.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.96 EPS. Equities research analysts expect that Microsoft will post 4.41 earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, CEO Satya Nadella sold 267,466 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, February 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $106.01, for a total transaction of $28,354,070.66. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 1,746,854 shares in the company, valued at $185,183,992.54. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Christopher C. Capossela sold 10,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, March 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $111.48, for a total transaction of $1,170,540.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 156,866 shares in the company, valued at approximately $17,487,421.68. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders have sold 333,667 shares of company stock worth $35,657,016. Company insiders own 1.38% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 9,587.0% in the 4th 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 last quarter. Norges Bank acquired a new stake in shares of Microsoft in the 4th quarter worth $7,728,792,000. Lunia Capital LP increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 9,650.2% in the 4th quarter. Lunia Capital LP now owns 17,036,540 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $17,037,000 after acquiring an additional 16,861,809 shares during the last quarter. FMR LLC increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 5.2% in the 4th 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 last quarter. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 1.6% in the 3rd 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 last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 72.89% of the company’s stock.

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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