Tufton Capital Management reduced its stake in shares of Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) by 0.9% in the third quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 189,196 shares of the software giant’s stock after selling 1,769 shares during the period. Microsoft makes up approximately 2.8% of Tufton Capital Management’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 2nd largest position. Tufton Capital Management’s holdings in Microsoft were worth $14,093,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of MSFT. Acrospire Investment Management LLC raised its stake in Microsoft by 300.0% in the second quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 1,600 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $110,000 after buying an additional 1,200 shares during the last quarter. Stelac Advisory Services LLC raised its stake in Microsoft by 23.5% in the second quarter. Stelac Advisory Services LLC now owns 2,033 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $140,000 after buying an additional 387 shares during the last quarter. Pacific Center for Financial Services raised its stake in Microsoft by 3.0% in the second quarter. Pacific Center for Financial Services now owns 2,572 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $177,000 after buying an additional 75 shares during the last quarter. AlphaMark Advisors LLC raised its stake in Microsoft by 1.1% in the second quarter. AlphaMark Advisors LLC now owns 2,677 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $185,000 after buying an additional 30 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Ruggie Capital Group increased its holdings in shares of Microsoft by 1,165.9% in the second quarter. Ruggie Capital Group now owns 2,823 shares of the software giant’s stock valued at $195,000 after purchasing an additional 2,600 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 73.19% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ MSFT) opened at $89.60 on Tuesday. The company has a market capitalization of $691,227.31, a PE ratio of 26.51, a P/E/G ratio of 2.09 and a beta of 0.99. Microsoft Co. has a 1-year low of $62.03 and a 1-year high of $89.78. The company has a current ratio of 3.12, a quick ratio of 3.06 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.91.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 26th. The software giant reported $0.84 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.72 by $0.12. Microsoft had a return on equity of 35.23% and a net margin of 24.56%. The company had revenue of $24.50 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $23.57 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.76 earnings per share. Microsoft’s quarterly revenue was up 11.7% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts predict that Microsoft Co. will post 3.39 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 8th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, February 15th will be issued a $0.42 dividend. This represents a $1.68 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.88%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, February 14th. Microsoft’s payout ratio is currently 57.14%.

In other Microsoft news, insider Frank H. Brod sold 18,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $83.15, for a total value of $1,496,700.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Christopher C. Capossela sold 4,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $83.46, for a total value of $333,840.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 189,278 shares in the company, valued at $15,797,141.88. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 45,000 shares of company stock worth $3,759,420. 1.49% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of research analysts have recently weighed in on MSFT shares. Royal Bank of Canada reissued an “outperform” rating and issued a $88.00 price objective (up from $85.00) on shares of Microsoft in a report on Friday, October 27th. UBS Group set a $105.00 price objective on Microsoft and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, November 9th. Vetr lowered Microsoft from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $93.77 price objective on the stock. in a report on Monday, December 11th. KeyCorp reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $94.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a report on Friday, October 27th. Finally, Citigroup increased their price objective on Microsoft from $74.00 to $79.00 and gave the company a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, October 27th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and thirty-one have assigned a buy rating to the company. Microsoft currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $86.97.

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About Microsoft

Microsoft Corporation is a technology company. The Company develops, licenses, and supports a range of software products, services and devices. The Company’s segments include Productivity and Business Processes, Intelligent Cloud and More Personal Computing. The Company’s 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.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)

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