Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) was upgraded by research analysts at Vetr from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued on Thursday. The firm presently has a $62.29 price objective on the software giant’s stock. Vetr‘s target price would indicate a potential upside of 5.54% from the company’s previous close.

A number of other equities analysts have also recently issued reports on MSFT. Nomura restated a “buy” rating on shares of Microsoft Corp. in a report on Sunday, July 17th. BMO Capital Markets restated a “buy” rating and issued a $57.00 target price on shares of Microsoft Corp. in a report on Sunday, July 17th. RBC Capital Markets set a $65.00 target price on Microsoft Corp. and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, October 21st. Bank of America Corp. restated a “buy” rating and issued a $68.00 target price (up from $65.00) on shares of Microsoft Corp. in a report on Sunday, October 23rd. Finally, Macquarie set a $60.00 price target on Microsoft Corp. and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, October 21st. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and twenty-three have given a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $61.98.

Analyst Recommendations for Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT)

Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) opened at 59.02 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $458.90 billion, a P/E ratio of 28.27 and a beta of 1.16. Microsoft Corp. has a 12-month low of $48.03 and a 12-month high of $61.37. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $58.54 and a 200-day moving average price of $55.09.

Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 20th. The software giant reported $0.76 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.08. Microsoft Corp. had a return on equity of 30.92% and a net margin of 19.40%. The company had revenue of $22.30 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $21.71 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.67 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.1% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that Microsoft Corp. will post $2.96 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 8th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, November 17th will be issued a dividend of $0.39 per share. This represents a $1.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.64%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 15th. This is a boost from Microsoft Corp.’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.36. Microsoft Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is 69.23%.

In other Microsoft Corp. news, Director William H. Gates III sold 2,700,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, October 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $60.99, for a total transaction of $164,673,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, CMO Christopher C. Capossela sold 12,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $60.51, for a total value of $726,120.00. Following the transaction, the chief marketing officer now owns 253,306 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $15,327,546.06. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 2.99% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in MSFT. Euclid Advisors LLC increased its stake in Microsoft Corp. by 24.6% in the first quarter. Euclid Advisors LLC now owns 672,938 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $37,166,000 after buying an additional 132,695 shares in the last quarter. First Manhattan Co. increased its stake in Microsoft Corp. by 1.4% in the second quarter. First Manhattan Co. now owns 7,974,066 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $408,033,000 after buying an additional 108,933 shares in the last quarter. Berkshire Asset Management LLC PA increased its stake in Microsoft Corp. by 8.2% in the second quarter. Berkshire Asset Management LLC PA now owns 343,893 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $17,597,000 after buying an additional 26,037 shares in the last quarter. Roffman Miller Associates Inc. PA increased its stake in Microsoft Corp. by 5.8% in the second quarter. Roffman Miller Associates Inc. PA now owns 390,571 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $19,986,000 after buying an additional 21,496 shares in the last quarter. Finally, First National Bank of Omaha increased its stake in Microsoft Corp. by 2.0% in the second quarter. First National Bank of Omaha now owns 468,734 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $23,985,000 after buying an additional 9,313 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 71.77% of the company’s stock.

Microsoft Corp. Company Profile

Microsoft Corporation is a technology company. The Company develops, licenses and supports a range of software products, services and devices. Its segments are Productivity and Business Processes, Intelligent Cloud, and More Personal Computing. Its products include operating systems; cross-device productivity applications; server applications; business solution applications; desktop and server management tools; software development tools; video games, and training and certification of computer system integrators and developers.

5 Day Chart for NASDAQ:MSFT

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