Microsoft (MSFT) Receiving Favorable Press Coverage, Analysis Shows

Headlines about Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) have trended positive recently, according to InfoTrie Sentiment Analysis. InfoTrie scores the sentiment of news coverage by analyzing more than six thousand news and blog sources in real time. The firm ranks coverage of public companies on a scale of negative five to positive five, with scores nearest to five being the most favorable. Microsoft earned a news impact score of 3.00 on their scale. InfoTrie also assigned media stories about the software giant an news buzz score of 10 out of 10, meaning that recent news coverage is extremely likely to have an effect on the company’s share price in the next few days.

These are some of the headlines that may have impacted Microsoft’s ranking:

Shares of MSFT opened at $105.25 on Tuesday. Microsoft has a fifty-two week low of $87.08 and a fifty-two week high of $116.18. The stock has a market capitalization of $813.64 billion, a P/E ratio of 27.13, a PEG ratio of 1.94 and a beta of 1.17. The company has a quick ratio of 3.08, a current ratio of 3.12 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 30th. The software giant reported $1.10 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.09 by $0.01. Microsoft had a return on equity of 39.52% and a net margin of 28.31%. The company had revenue of $32.47 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $32.53 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.96 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 12.3% on a year-over-year basis. Sell-side analysts expect that Microsoft will post 4.41 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 14th. Investors of record on Thursday, February 21st will be issued a $0.46 dividend. This represents a $1.84 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.75%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, February 20th. Microsoft’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 47.42%.

Several equities research analysts have recently issued reports on the company. Credit Suisse Group set a $125.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Sunday, January 27th. UBS Group set a $125.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, January 31st. Nomura decreased their target price on Microsoft from $115.00 to $113.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, January 31st. Oppenheimer reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $127.00 target price on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Monday, October 29th. Finally, Citigroup reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and set a $110.00 target price (down from $114.00) on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Thursday, January 31st. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating, thirty-one have given a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. Microsoft presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $122.11.

In other Microsoft news, CEO Satya Nadella sold 267,466 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, February 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $106.01, for a total value of $28,354,070.66. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 1,746,854 shares in the company, valued at approximately $185,183,992.54. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, EVP Christopher C. Capossela sold 4,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, December 6th. The stock was sold at an average price of $108.00, for a total value of $432,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 173,931 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $18,784,548. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 285,466 shares of company stock valued at $30,325,771. 1.38% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

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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 for businesses, 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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