Vetr Inc. Lowers Microsoft Co. (MSFT) to Hold
Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) was downgraded by investment analysts at Vetr from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday. They presently have a $71.27 target price on the software giant’s stock. Vetr‘s price objective points to a potential upside of 3.77% from the company’s previous close.
Several other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports on the stock. Citigroup Inc raised shares of Microsoft from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their price objective for the stock from $41.00 to $65.00 in a research report on Friday, January 27th. Barclays PLC lifted their price objective on shares of Microsoft from $70.00 to $71.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Friday, January 27th. Macquarie set a $61.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 25th. Pacific Crest reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $70.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Thursday, April 20th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $59.00 price target on shares of Microsoft and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 25th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating, twenty-five have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $69.45.
Shares of Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) traded up 0.34% during trading on Tuesday, hitting $68.68. The stock had a trading volume of 15,425,824 shares. Microsoft has a one year low of $48.03 and a one year high of $69.71. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $67.41 and its 200-day moving average price is $64.15. The stock has a market cap of $530.24 billion, a P/E ratio of 30.31 and a beta of 1.08.
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 27th. The software giant reported $0.73 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.69 by $0.04. The business had revenue of $23.56 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $23.62 billion. Microsoft had a net margin of 19.57% and a return on equity of 32.12%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 6.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.62 EPS. Analysts expect that Microsoft will post $3.03 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, June 8th. Investors of record on Thursday, May 18th will be paid a dividend of $0.39 per share. This represents a $1.56 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.27%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, May 16th. Microsoft’s payout ratio is 73.59%.
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In related news, EVP Christopher C. Capossela sold 3,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $69.11, for a total transaction of $207,330.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 216,507 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $14,962,798.77. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director William H. Gates III sold 2,500,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $69.40, for a total transaction of $173,500,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 16,645,694 shares of company stock worth $1,127,019,616 in the last three months. Insiders own 2.99% of the company’s stock.
Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. James Investment Research Inc. increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 29.5% in the first quarter. James Investment Research Inc. now owns 1,702 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $112,000 after buying an additional 388 shares during the last quarter. Asset Planning Services Ltd. increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 93.0% in the first quarter. Asset Planning Services Ltd. now owns 1,737 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $114,000 after buying an additional 837 shares during the last quarter. Kernodle & Katon Asset Management Group LLC increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 0.5% in the first quarter. Kernodle & Katon Asset Management Group LLC now owns 2,067 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $136,000 after buying an additional 11 shares during the last quarter. Pacific Center for Financial Services purchased a new position in shares of Microsoft during the fourth quarter valued at about $155,000. Finally, Welch Investments LLC purchased a new position in shares of Microsoft during the fourth quarter valued at about $160,000. 72.29% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Microsoft Company Profile
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.
To view Vetr’s full report, visit Vetr’s official website.
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