First Trust Advisors LP increased its holdings in shares of Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) by 2.7% during the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 2,453,336 shares of the software giant’s stock after purchasing an additional 64,831 shares during the period. Microsoft accounts for 0.5% of First Trust Advisors LP’s holdings, making the stock its 22nd biggest holding. First Trust Advisors LP’s holdings in Microsoft were worth $280,588,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Nwam LLC raised its stake in shares of Microsoft by 48.5% in the second quarter. Nwam LLC now owns 274,986 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $27,116,000 after purchasing an additional 89,853 shares in the last quarter. Legacy Financial Advisors Inc. raised its stake in shares of Microsoft by 6.6% in the second quarter. Legacy Financial Advisors Inc. now owns 8,521 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $898,000 after purchasing an additional 531 shares in the last quarter. Hills Bank & Trust Co. raised its stake in Microsoft by 1.0% during the second quarter. Hills Bank & Trust Co. now owns 68,623 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $6,767,000 after acquiring an additional 710 shares in the last quarter. ELCO Management Co. LLC raised its stake in Microsoft by 10.9% during the second quarter. ELCO Management Co. LLC now owns 10,877 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $1,073,000 after acquiring an additional 1,067 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Tikehau Investment Management raised its stake in Microsoft by 591.8% during the second quarter. Tikehau Investment Management now owns 46,408 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $4,576,000 after acquiring an additional 39,700 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 71.62% of the company’s stock.

MSFT has been the subject of several recent analyst reports. Bank of America upgraded Microsoft to a “buy” rating and dropped their price objective for the stock from $150.00 to $140.00 in a research note on Monday, January 28th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Credit Suisse Group reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Wednesday, January 2nd. Macquarie upgraded Microsoft from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $121.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Friday, October 12th. Jefferies Financial Group reiterated a “sell” rating and set a $75.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Monday, November 19th. Finally, reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $127.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Tuesday, October 23rd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating, thirty-one have given a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $122.11.

In related news, CMO Christopher C. Capossela sold 10,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $111.77, for a total value of $1,117,700.00. Following the transaction, the chief marketing officer now owns 177,931 shares in the company, valued at $19,887,347.87. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Kathleen T. Hogan sold 36,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, November 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $111.28, for a total value of $4,061,720.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 226,801 shares in the company, valued at approximately $25,238,415.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 54,500 shares of company stock worth $6,033,420 in the last 90 days. Company insiders own 1.38% of the company’s stock.

Shares of MSFT stock opened at $102.78 on Monday. The company has a current ratio of 2.92, a quick ratio of 2.85 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.88. The firm has a market cap of $791.38 billion, a PE ratio of 26.49, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.84 and a beta of 1.18. Microsoft Co. has a 52 week low of $83.83 and a 52 week high of $116.18.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, January 30th. The software giant reported $1.10 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.09 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $32.47 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $32.53 billion. Microsoft had a return on equity of 40.65% and a net margin of 28.31%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 12.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.96 earnings per share. As a group, equities analysts predict that Microsoft Co. will post 4.43 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 14th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, February 21st will be issued a dividend of $0.46 per share. This represents a $1.84 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.79%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, February 20th. Microsoft’s payout ratio is presently 47.42%.

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Microsoft Company Profile

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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)

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