Vetr downgraded shares of Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report report published on Wednesday. They currently have $59.96 target price on the software giant’s stock.
MSFT has been the topic of several other research reports. Cowen and Company raised Microsoft Corp. from a market perform rating to an outperform rating and set a $58.00 price target on the stock in a report on Tuesday, May 24th. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. set a $55.00 target price on Microsoft Corp. and gave the company a neutral rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 29th. Citigroup Inc. raised their target price on Microsoft Corp. from $36.00 to $37.00 and gave the company a sell rating in a research report on Thursday, July 7th. Pacific Crest restated a buy rating and issued a $65.00 target price on shares of Microsoft Corp. in a research report on Tuesday, September 13th. Finally, Jefferies Group restated an underperform rating and issued a $40.00 target price on shares of Microsoft Corp. in a research report on Tuesday, June 28th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and twenty have given a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $59.25.
Shares of Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) opened at 57.76 on Wednesday. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $57.55 and its 200 day moving average price is $53.96. Microsoft Corp. has a 1-year low of $43.05 and a 1-year high of $58.70. The stock has a market cap of $450.10 billion, a PE ratio of 27.50 and a beta of 1.08.
Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 19th. The software giant reported $0.69 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.11. The business had revenue of $22.60 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $22.15 billion. Microsoft Corp. had a return on equity of 29.38% and a net margin of 19.33%. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.60 EPS. Equities analysts forecast that Microsoft Corp. will post $2.90 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 8th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, November 17th will be given a dividend of $0.39 per share. This is a boost from Microsoft Corp.’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.36. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 15th. This represents a $1.56 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.70%. Microsoft Corp.’s payout ratio is presently 70.24%.
In related news, Director William H. Gates III sold 2,500,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, July 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $55.94, for a total value of $139,850,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, insider G Mason Morfit sold 18,000,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, July 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $56.12, for a total transaction of $1,010,160,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 3.76% of the company’s stock.
Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Pensionfund DSM Netherlands boosted its position in Microsoft Corp. by 0.9% in the first quarter. Pensionfund DSM Netherlands now owns 288,200 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $15,917,000 after buying an additional 2,500 shares during the period. LVM Capital Management Ltd. MI boosted its position in Microsoft Corp. by 4.5% in the first quarter. LVM Capital Management Ltd. MI now owns 237,834 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $13,136,000 after buying an additional 10,225 shares during the period. Founders Capital Management LLC boosted its position in Microsoft Corp. by 0.6% in the first quarter. Founders Capital Management LLC now owns 124,821 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $6,894,000 after buying an additional 729 shares during the period. Private Asset Management Inc. boosted its position in Microsoft Corp. by 14.5% in the first quarter. Private Asset Management Inc. now owns 142,165 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $7,852,000 after buying an additional 18,004 shares during the period. Finally, First American Trust FSB boosted its position in Microsoft Corp. by 5.7% in the first quarter. First American Trust FSB now owns 122,637 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $6,773,000 after buying an additional 6,660 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 71.58% of the company’s stock.
About Microsoft Corp.
Microsoft Corporation is a technology company. The Company develops, licenses and supports a range of software products, services and devices. Its segments are Productivity and Business Processes, Intelligent Cloud, and More Personal Computing. Its products include operating systems; cross-device productivity applications; server applications; business solution applications; desktop and server management tools; software development tools; video games, and training and certification of computer system integrators and developers.
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