Cloud sales were strong. Gaming sales were strong. Guidance was impressive. LinkedIn continues to look like a great acquisition. And CEO Satya Nadella hinted more good times lay ahead for the tech giant.
For its latest financial efforts, Microsoft shares hit a record high on Friday. But as always, there is a decent bear case to be made on Microsoft's red-hot stock.
Here are the areas of concern in Microsoft's quarter as seen through the eyes of Credit Suisse analyst Brad Zelnick:
"What we liked less: (1) $7.4 billion free cash flow was down 15% year over year and compares with Street [estimate] $10 billion reflecting higher capex in support of cloud, though also includes tax payments related to ASC 606 and TCJA that if adjusted along with an earlier start to HW inventory build this year, would result in 3% lower free cash flow growth year over year; (2) Office commercial products and cloud revenues rose 8% year over year, moderating from prior three quarters of double-digit growth, though due to strong mix of Office 365 which contributed to a $1 billion beat on Commercial unearned revenue; (3) Azure growth decelerated, though off a tougher comparison and still better than Street/Credit Suisse estimates, and increasingly constrained by what we estimate is a ~30% mix of Azure 'per user' services like Enterprise Mobility."
Here's why Microsoft is a key holding in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS member club.