$1.32 EPS Expected for Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) This Quarter

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Wall Street brokerages expect Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) to report earnings of $1.32 per share for the current quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Ten analysts have issued estimates for Microsoft’s earnings. The highest EPS estimate is $1.35 and the lowest is $1.30. Microsoft reported earnings of $1.10 per share in the same quarter last year, which suggests a positive year over year growth rate of 20%. The firm is expected to report its next quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, January 29th.

On average, analysts expect that Microsoft will report full-year earnings of $5.35 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.23 to $5.61. For the next financial year, analysts anticipate that the firm will report earnings of $6.01 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.59 to $6.35. Zacks’ EPS calculations are an average based on a survey of research analysts that cover Microsoft.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, October 23rd. The software giant reported $1.38 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.24 by $0.14. The firm 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 company’s quarterly revenue was up 13.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.14 EPS.

A number of brokerages recently issued reports on MSFT. Nomura set a $161.00 price objective on Microsoft and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 15th. Mizuho reissued a “buy” rating and set a $160.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Wednesday, November 20th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reissued a “buy” rating and set a $169.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Thursday, October 24th. Zacks Investment Research raised Microsoft from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $147.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Friday, October 25th. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein set a $174.00 price objective on Microsoft and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 5th. 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. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $160.21.

Shares of NASDAQ:MSFT traded up $1.29 during midday trading on Friday, reaching $154.53. 23,194,276 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 18,988,936. The firm’s 50 day simple moving average is $147.95 and its two-hundred day simple moving average is $138.96. 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 stock has a market cap of $1,157.29 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 32.53, a P/E/G ratio of 2.38 and a beta of 1.23. Microsoft has a fifty-two week low of $93.96 and a fifty-two week high of $152.50.

Microsoft declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share repurchase plan on Wednesday, September 18th that permits the company to buyback $40.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the software giant to repurchase up to 3.8% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are often a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 12th. Investors of record on Thursday, February 20th will be issued a dividend of $0.51 per share. This represents a $2.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.32%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, February 19th. Microsoft’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 42.95%.

In other news, EVP Jean Philippe Courtois sold 13,074 shares of Microsoft stock in a transaction dated Friday, October 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $141.00, for a total value of $1,843,434.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 611,855 shares in the company, valued at approximately $86,271,555. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, EVP Margaret L. Johnson sold 35,000 shares of Microsoft stock in a transaction dated Thursday, December 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $150.01, for a total value of $5,250,350.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 62,423 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $9,364,074.23. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 66,919 shares of company stock valued at $9,817,790 over the last 90 days. 1.39% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in MSFT. Nuveen Asset Management LLC boosted its stake in shares of Microsoft by 2,651.8% in the 2nd quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 67,353,275 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $9,022,645,000 after buying an additional 64,905,685 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Microsoft by 1.3% in the 2nd 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. Edgewood Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Microsoft in the 2nd quarter valued at about $620,230,000. Parnassus Investments CA boosted its stake in shares of Microsoft by 87.9% in the 2nd quarter. Parnassus Investments CA now owns 8,818,322 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $1,181,303,000 after buying an additional 4,126,121 shares during the period. Finally, California Public Employees Retirement System boosted its stake in shares of Microsoft by 27.6% in the 3rd quarter. California Public Employees Retirement System now owns 18,465,052 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $2,567,196,000 after buying an additional 3,989,278 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 71.82% 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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