Strategic Financial Services Inc lessened its stake in Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) by 9.3% during the 1st quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 24,907 shares of the software giant’s stock after selling 2,553 shares during the quarter. Microsoft makes up about 0.5% of Strategic Financial Services Inc’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 21st largest position. Strategic Financial Services Inc’s holdings in Microsoft were worth $5,872,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.
Several other hedge funds also recently added to or reduced their stakes in MSFT. Norges Bank purchased a new position in shares of Microsoft in the fourth quarter worth $17,697,996,000. Morgan Stanley raised its stake in Microsoft by 14.7% during the fourth quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 69,099,798 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $15,369,178,000 after purchasing an additional 8,865,366 shares in the last quarter. Itau Unibanco Holding S.A. raised its stake in Microsoft by 5,330.8% during the fourth quarter. Itau Unibanco Holding S.A. now owns 5,357,196 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $18,791,000 after purchasing an additional 5,258,551 shares in the last quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC raised its stake in Microsoft by 7.4% during the fourth quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 60,306,979 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $13,413,478,000 after purchasing an additional 4,140,017 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Viking Global Investors LP raised its stake in Microsoft by 43.4% during the fourth quarter. Viking Global Investors LP now owns 11,838,092 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $2,633,028,000 after purchasing an additional 3,581,072 shares in the last quarter. 69.38% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
A number of equities research analysts recently issued reports on the stock. Citigroup Inc. 3% Minimum Coupon Principal Protected Based Upon Russell upped their price target on shares of Microsoft from $292.00 to $302.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 21st. Jefferies Financial Group cut their price objective on shares of Microsoft from $300.00 to $290.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, May 18th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. KGI Securities assumed coverage on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Tuesday, June 1st. They set an “outperform” rating and a $300.00 price objective on the stock. Fundamental Research boosted their price objective on shares of Microsoft from $236.60 to $256.70 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 26th. Finally, Wedbush reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $310.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Wednesday, May 26th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, thirty-one have issued a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $290.70.
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last released its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, April 27th. The software giant reported $1.95 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.76 by $0.19. The business had revenue of $41.71 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $40.83 billion. Microsoft had a net margin of 35.02% and a return on equity of 43.75%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 19.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.40 earnings per share. As a group, sell-side analysts expect that Microsoft Co. will post 7.71 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 10th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, May 20th were given a dividend of $0.56 per share. This represents a $2.24 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.87%. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, May 19th. Microsoft’s payout ratio is 38.89%.
In related news, CMO Christopher C. Capossela sold 6,086 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $252.66, for a total value of $1,537,688.76. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief marketing officer now directly owns 92,119 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $23,274,786.54. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, President Bradford L. Smith sold 8,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $250.27, for a total transaction of $2,002,160.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the president now directly owns 694,584 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $173,833,537.68. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 15,586 shares of company stock valued at $3,899,849. Insiders own 0.05% of the company’s stock.
Microsoft Corporation develops, licenses, and supports software, services, devices, and solutions worldwide. Its Productivity and Business Processes segment offers Office, Exchange, SharePoint, Microsoft Teams, Office 365 Security and Compliance, and Skype for Business, as well as related Client Access Licenses (CAL); Skype, Outlook.com, OneDrive, and LinkedIn; and Dynamics 365, a set of cloud-based and on-premises business solutions for small and medium businesses, large organizations, and divisions of enterprises.
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