Background: Microsoft develops, licenses, and supports software products and services; and designs and sells hardware worldwide. The company was founded in 1975 and is based in Redmond, Wash. Microsoft trades an average of 39.5 million shares per day with a market cap of $243 billion.
52-Week Range: $24.30 to $32.95Book Value: $7.92 Investors aren't expecting an improvement in earnings. Analysts forecast per-share results below last year in the same quarter. The fiscal first-quarter earnings release is planned after the market closes on Thursday. The consensus estimate is currently 56 cents a share, dropping 12 cents from 68 cents during the matching period last year. The lowest analyst estimate this report is 47 cents per share, and the highest is 64 cents per share. TheStreet's Tim Melvin writes about Microsoft in Perking Up to Tech Shares. Analysts as a whole like this company, and so do I. Currently, Microsoft has 28 buy recommendations out of 40 analysts covering the company, along with 11 holds. One has given it a sell rating. Sixteen out of 40 analysts now rate Microsoft a strong buy, up from 15 analysts a month ago. Compared to three months ago even more analysts are rating this company as a strong buy. The stock appreciated 13.5% in the last year, and the average analyst target price for Microsoft is $35.67. I consider the recent fall in price to be more of a buying opportunity than a warning. The yield is strong enough to justify adding as the price declines. Microsoft currently pays an annualized dividend of 80 cents, yielding 2.73%. The last reported short interest is paltry and without reason to consider it a meaningful influence at only 1.3% of the average trading float. MSFT Revenue Quarterly data by YCharts
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