Brokerages expect that Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) will report earnings per share (EPS) of $1.09 for the current quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Twelve analysts have provided estimates for Microsoft’s earnings. The lowest EPS estimate is $1.05 and the highest is $1.13. Microsoft posted earnings per share of $0.96 during the same quarter last year, which would indicate a positive year-over-year growth rate of 13.5%. The firm is expected to announce its next earnings results on Wednesday, January 30th.

On average, analysts expect that Microsoft will report full-year earnings of $4.43 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $4.31 to $4.55. For the next fiscal year, analysts expect that the business will post earnings of $4.94 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $4.45 to $5.25. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share calculations are a mean average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that cover Microsoft.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, October 24th. The software giant reported $1.14 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.96 by $0.18. The company had revenue of $29.08 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $27.92 billion. Microsoft had a return on equity of 39.86% and a net margin of 16.38%. The business’s revenue was up 18.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.84 earnings per share.

MSFT has been the subject of several recent research reports. Credit Suisse Group set a $125.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, September 19th. Oppenheimer set a $127.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, November 19th. DZ Bank reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Microsoft in a report on Thursday, October 18th. Macquarie reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $125.00 target price on shares of Microsoft in a report on Thursday, October 25th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $120.00 target price on shares of Microsoft in a report on Thursday, October 25th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating, thirty-three have issued a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $121.88.

In other news, CMO Christopher C. Capossela sold 23,337 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, September 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $109.22, for a total transaction of $2,548,867.14. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief marketing officer now directly owns 190,570 shares in the company, valued at $20,814,055.40. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, CEO Satya Nadella sold 203,418 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, October 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $106.68, for a total value of $21,700,632.24. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 1,014,247 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $108,199,869.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have sold 331,080 shares of company stock valued at $35,679,993. Insiders own 1.38% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in MSFT. Ceredex Value Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in Microsoft in the first quarter worth approximately $73,850,000. ProVise Management Group LLC lifted its position in shares of Microsoft by 5.3% during the 1st quarter. ProVise Management Group LLC now owns 43,673 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $3,986,000 after acquiring an additional 2,208 shares during the last quarter. Rockefeller Capital Management L.P. acquired a new stake in shares of Microsoft during the 1st quarter valued at $162,221,000. Windsor Group LTD lifted its position in shares of Microsoft by 3.6% during the 1st quarter. Windsor Group LTD now owns 21,700 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $1,981,000 after acquiring an additional 764 shares during the last quarter. Finally, KAMES CAPITAL plc lifted its position in shares of Microsoft by 9.2% during the 1st quarter. KAMES CAPITAL plc now owns 386,537 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $35,174,000 after acquiring an additional 32,655 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 71.90% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NASDAQ:MSFT traded down $3.57 during trading on Wednesday, hitting $108.52. 44,571,989 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 32,458,028. The firm has a market capitalization of $853.83 billion, a PE ratio of 27.97, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.03 and a beta of 1.25. Microsoft has a one year low of $80.98 and a one year high of $116.18. 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 also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 14th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, February 21st will be given a dividend of $0.46 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, February 20th. This represents a $1.84 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.70%. Microsoft’s dividend payout ratio is presently 47.42%.

About Microsoft

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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