Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) had its target price increased by Royal Bank of Canada from $163.00 to $180.00 in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday morning, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. They currently have an outperform rating on the software giant’s stock.

Other research analysts also recently issued research reports about the company. Wells Fargo & Co restated an overweight rating on shares of Microsoft in a report on Friday, January 17th. BidaskClub upgraded Microsoft from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a report on Wednesday, November 13th. ValuEngine cut Microsoft from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Wednesday, October 2nd. Sanford C. Bernstein set a $174.00 price target on Microsoft and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Thursday, December 5th. Finally, Cowen restated an outperform rating and set a $180.00 price target (up from $165.00) on shares of Microsoft in a report on Thursday, January 9th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating, thirty-three have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $168.80.

NASDAQ MSFT traded down $2.59 during trading on Tuesday, hitting $164.97. 1,759,467 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 20,123,888. The company has a current ratio of 2.85, a quick ratio of 2.81 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.69. The company has a market cap of $1,260.05 billion, a PE ratio of 31.06, a P/E/G ratio of 2.60 and a beta of 1.23. Microsoft has a fifty-two week low of $102.17 and a fifty-two week high of $168.19. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $158.58 and its two-hundred day moving average price is $144.83.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, October 23rd. The software giant reported $1.38 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.24 by $0.14. The firm had revenue of $33.06 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $32.24 billion. Microsoft had a return on equity of 39.14% and a net margin of 31.66%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 13.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $1.14 earnings per share. Analysts forecast that Microsoft will post 5.36 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 12th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, February 20th will be given a dividend of $0.51 per share. This represents a $2.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.24%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, February 19th. Microsoft’s payout ratio is 42.95%.

In other news, EVP Margaret L. Johnson sold 35,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, December 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $150.01, for a total transaction of $5,250,350.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 62,423 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $9,364,074.23. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CMO Christopher C. Capossela sold 2,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $142.89, for a total value of $357,225.00. Following the transaction, the chief marketing officer now directly owns 133,944 shares in the company, valued at $19,139,258.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 53,845 shares of company stock worth $7,974,356 over the last ninety days. 1.39% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Wealthsource Partners LLC raised its position in Microsoft by 5.0% in the 3rd quarter. Wealthsource Partners LLC now owns 51,337 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $7,137,000 after buying an additional 2,444 shares during the last quarter. Miracle Mile Advisors LLC increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 4.7% during the 3rd quarter. Miracle Mile Advisors LLC now owns 86,948 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $12,088,000 after purchasing an additional 3,915 shares during the last quarter. Global Retirement Partners LLC increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 34.6% during the 3rd quarter. Global Retirement Partners LLC now owns 65,133 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $9,055,000 after purchasing an additional 16,741 shares during the last quarter. AMI Asset Management Corp increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 15.7% during the 3rd quarter. AMI Asset Management Corp now owns 503,586 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $70,014,000 after purchasing an additional 68,174 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Penserra Capital Management LLC increased its position in shares of Microsoft by 1,170.3% during the 3rd quarter. Penserra Capital Management LLC now owns 58,270 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $8,098,000 after purchasing an additional 53,683 shares during the last quarter. 71.86% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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, 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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Analyst Recommendations for Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)

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