Altarock Partners LLC purchased a new position in Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) in the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor purchased 823,333 shares of the software giant’s stock, valued at approximately $223,041,000. Microsoft comprises 6.2% of Altarock Partners LLC’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 5th largest holding.
Several other institutional investors also recently bought and sold shares of MSFT. TCI Fund Management Ltd. boosted its holdings in shares of Microsoft by 43.1% in the first quarter. TCI Fund Management Ltd. now owns 20,483,405 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $4,829,372,000 after acquiring an additional 6,168,906 shares during the period. Liberty Wealth Management LLC raised its position in shares of Microsoft by 24,327.2% in the second quarter. Liberty Wealth Management LLC now owns 5,717,183 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $21,104,000 after buying an additional 5,693,778 shares in the last quarter. Altshuler Shaham Ltd raised its position in shares of Microsoft by 14,603.6% in the first quarter. Altshuler Shaham Ltd now owns 4,430,203 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $1,044,509,000 after buying an additional 4,400,073 shares in the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC raised its position in shares of Microsoft by 2.6% in the second quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 123,322,145 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $33,314,811,000 after buying an additional 3,090,751 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Prentice Wealth Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Microsoft in the first quarter worth $3,002,000. 69.17% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
A number of equities research analysts recently issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Microsoft from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $329.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Thursday, July 29th. Bank of America increased their price objective on Microsoft from $325.00 to $340.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 28th. UBS Group raised their price target on Microsoft from $325.00 to $350.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, August 20th. Royal Bank of Canada restated a “buy” rating and set a $360.00 price target on shares of Microsoft in a research report on Monday, August 23rd. Finally, Barclays raised their price target on Microsoft from $330.00 to $345.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Friday, September 17th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. One analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating, thirty-one have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $324.84.
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Monday, July 26th. The software giant reported $2.17 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.92 by $0.25. Microsoft had a return on equity of 45.76% and a net margin of 36.45%. The firm had revenue of $46.15 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $44.30 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.46 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 21.3% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts anticipate that Microsoft Co. will post 8.61 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, December 9th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, November 18th will be given a $0.62 dividend. This is a boost from Microsoft’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.56. This represents a $2.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.84%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, November 17th. Microsoft’s payout ratio is currently 28.11%.
Microsoft announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase plan on Tuesday, September 14th that authorizes the company to buyback $60.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the software giant to purchase up to 2.7% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are often an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.
In related news, CFO Amy Hood sold 60,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $303.08, for a total value of $18,184,800.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, CMO Christopher C. Capossela sold 10,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, September 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $298.82, for a total transaction of $2,988,200.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders sold 165,573 shares of company stock worth $50,066,379. Insiders own 0.05% of the company’s stock.
Microsoft Corp. engages in the development and support of software, services, devices, and solutions. It operates through the following business segments: Productivity and Business Processes; Intelligent Cloud; and More Personal Computing. The Productivity and Business Processes segment comprises products and services in the portfolio of productivity, communication, and information services of the company spanning a variety of devices and platform.
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