Traders Sell Microsoft (MSFT) on Strength After Insider Selling

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Investors sold shares of Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) on strength during trading hours on Wednesday following insider selling activity. $617.53 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $1,054.19 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $436.66 million out of the stock. Of all companies tracked, Microsoft had the highest net out-flow for the day. Microsoft traded up $4.24 for the day and closed at $111.96Specifically, insider Jean Philippe Courtois sold 28,939 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $110.00, for a total transaction of $3,183,290.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 500,782 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $55,086,020. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, insider Frank H. Brod sold 2,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $107.18, for a total value of $214,360.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 64,676 shares in the company, valued at $6,931,973.68. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 799,519 shares of company stock valued at $87,118,783. Corporate insiders own 1.38% of the company’s stock.

Several research analysts recently issued reports on the company. Credit Suisse Group set a $125.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, July 20th. Nomura set a $118.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, July 20th. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $120.00 target price on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Thursday, October 25th. Atlantic Securities set a $130.00 target price on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, July 20th. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $137.00 target price on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Thursday, October 25th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating, thirty-three have given a buy rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $121.88.

The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.88, a current ratio of 2.92 and a quick ratio of 2.85. The company has a market cap of $817.41 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 28.86, a PEG ratio of 1.94 and a beta of 1.26.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 24th. The software giant reported $1.14 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.96 by $0.18. The business had revenue of $29.08 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $27.92 billion. Microsoft had a return on equity of 39.86% and a net margin of 16.38%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 18.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.84 EPS. Analysts expect that Microsoft Co. will post 4.39 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 13th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, November 15th will be paid a $0.46 dividend. This is an increase from Microsoft’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.42. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, November 14th. This represents a $1.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.64%. Microsoft’s dividend payout ratio is presently 43.30%.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Biondo Investment Advisors LLC raised its holdings in Microsoft by 1.8% in the 3rd quarter. Biondo Investment Advisors LLC now owns 53,635 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $6,156,000 after purchasing an additional 965 shares during the period. Destination Wealth Management raised its holdings in Microsoft by 15.6% in the 3rd quarter. Destination Wealth Management now owns 12,015 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $1,374,000 after purchasing an additional 1,620 shares during the period. Sustainable Growth Advisers LP raised its holdings in Microsoft by 12.1% in the 3rd quarter. Sustainable Growth Advisers LP now owns 1,870,783 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $213,962,000 after purchasing an additional 201,214 shares during the period. Brighton Jones LLC raised its holdings in Microsoft by 5.6% in the 3rd quarter. Brighton Jones LLC now owns 502,278 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $57,428,000 after purchasing an additional 26,851 shares during the period. Finally, Retirement Planning Group acquired a new position in Microsoft in the 3rd quarter worth about $258,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 71.85% of the company’s stock.

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Microsoft Company Profile (NASDAQ:MSFT)

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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