Microsoft Corporation (MSFT): Today's Featured Computer Software & Services Laggard

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

Microsoft Corporation ( MSFT) pushed the Computer Software & Services industry lower today making it today's featured Computer Software & Services laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.2%. By the end of trading, Microsoft Corporation fell 40 cents (-1.3%) to $30.95 on average volume. Throughout the day, 42.2 million shares of Microsoft Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 37.6 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $30.73-$31.07 after having opened the day at $31.04 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $31.34. Other companies within the Computer Software & Services industry that declined today were: Kingtone Wirelessinfo Solution ( KONE), down 29%, Wireless Ronin Technologies ( RNIN), down 14.5%, Tangoe ( TNGO), down 10.5%, and BluePhoenix Solutions ( BPHX), down 7.1%.

Microsoft Corporation develops, licenses, and supports a range of software products and services; and designs and sells hardware worldwide. Microsoft Corporation has a market cap of $254.77 billion and is part of the technology sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.2, equal to the average computer software & services industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 17.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 21 analysts that rate Microsoft Corporation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and eight rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Microsoft Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, reasonable valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the positive front, Vringo ( VRNG), up 7.3%, Callidus Software ( CALD), up 5.9%, icad ( ICAD), up 5.5%, and Intelligent Systems ( INS), up 5.4%, were all gainers within the computer software & services industry with Cognizant Technology Solutions Corporation ( CTSH) being today's featured computer software & services industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the computer software & services industry could consider iShares S&P NA Tech Software Idx ( IGV) while those bearish on the computer software & services industry could consider ProShares Ultra Short Technology ( REW).

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