Other equities analysts have also issued research reports about the stock. Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) increased their price target on shares of Microsoft Corporation from $72.00 to $78.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Friday, April 28th. Pacific Crest reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $78.00 target price (up previously from $70.00) on shares of Microsoft Corporation in a report on Friday, April 28th. Morgan Stanley reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $72.00 target price on shares of Microsoft Corporation in a report on Thursday, April 20th. Deutsche Bank AG reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $75.00 target price on shares of Microsoft Corporation in a report on Thursday, April 6th. Finally, Morningstar, Inc. reaffirmed a buy rating on shares of Microsoft Corporation in a report on Friday, April 28th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and twenty-eight have issued a buy rating to the stock. Microsoft Corporation currently has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $76.15.
BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed their outperform rating on shares of Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) in a research report sent to investors on Sunday, July 16th, Marketbeat.com reports. BMO Capital Markets currently has a $86.00 price target on the software giant’s stock, up from their prior price target of $75.00.
Shares of Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ MSFT) traded down 0.44% on Friday, hitting $72.26. 26,499,158 shares of the stock traded hands. Microsoft Corporation has a 52 week low of $55.61 and a 52 week high of $74.42. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $71.23 and a 200-day moving average price of $67.50. The stock has a market cap of $556.98 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 26.66 and a beta of 1.00.
Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 20th. The software giant reported $0.98 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.71 by $0.27. Microsoft Corporation had a net margin of 23.57% and a return on equity of 36.81%. The company had revenue of $24.70 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $24.29 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.69 EPS. Microsoft Corporation’s revenue was up 9.1% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Microsoft Corporation will post $3.23 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, September 14th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, August 17th will be issued a $0.39 dividend. This represents a $1.56 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.16%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, August 15th. Microsoft Corporation’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 57.78%.
In related news, Director William H. Gates III sold 2,500,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $68.90, for a total transaction of $172,250,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, insider Jean Philippe Courtois sold 26,763 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, July 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $74.00, for a total transaction of $1,980,462.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 544,080 shares in the company, valued at approximately $40,261,920. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 9,560,855 shares of company stock worth $658,531,908. 2.99% of the stock is owned by insiders.
A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Norges Bank bought a new position in Microsoft Corporation during the fourth quarter worth approximately $4,334,099,000. Dodge & Cox bought a new position in Microsoft Corporation during the fourth quarter worth approximately $2,658,504,000. FMR LLC boosted its position in Microsoft Corporation by 11.0% in the fourth quarter. FMR LLC now owns 177,344,854 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $11,020,210,000 after buying an additional 17,606,133 shares during the last quarter. Asset Management One Co. Ltd. boosted its position in Microsoft Corporation by 791.3% in the fourth quarter. Asset Management One Co. Ltd. now owns 13,263,687 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $825,108,000 after buying an additional 11,775,547 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Viking Global Investors LP boosted its position in Microsoft Corporation by 60.6% in the fourth quarter. Viking Global Investors LP now owns 21,950,056 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $1,363,976,000 after buying an additional 8,282,782 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.87% of the company’s stock.
About Microsoft Corporation
Microsoft Corporation is a technology company. The Company develops, licenses, and supports a range of software products, services and devices. The Company’s segments include Productivity and Business Processes, Intelligent Cloud and More Personal Computing. The Company’s 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.