|Bid||136.01 x 800|
|Ask||136.03 x 1400|
|Day's range||135.72 - 137.66|
|52-week range||93.96 - 137.66|
|Beta (3Y monthly)||1.05|
|PE ratio (TTM)||30.21|
|Forward dividend & yield||1.84 (1.36%)|
|1y target est||N/A|
When Microsoft introduced the Surface Book 2 in 2017, it added a 15-inch screen option. While that gave the Macbook Pro some serious competition, it still started at $2,499. Now, Microsoft is offering a 15-inch Surface Book 2 configuration for $1,999 -- a full $500 less than the previous entry point. As you'd expect, the price cut does come with a few trade offs.
There’s talk of Dow 29,000 and even 32,000. With low interest rates, high stock prices may be justified, though risks are rising as well.
Microsoft's LinkedIn on Thursday said it would add 800 new roles to its European headquarters in Dublin, the latest major jobs announcement that capped off a record six months for foreign direct investment (FDI) into Ireland. The strong performance underscores the strength of Ireland's economic recovery, with a robust jobs market approaching full employment despite risks from a slowdown in global growth and neighbouring Britain's planned exit from the European Union. "Ireland's position for companies going forward is that we will be in Europe and at the centre of Europe, and I think that resonates," IDA Ireland CEO Martin Shanahan told a news conference as it also launched an international advertising campaign to highlight the country's continued EU membership.
(Bloomberg) -- Kroger Co. fell the most in more than three months after posting an uneven quarterly performance, fueling investor concerns that Walmart Inc. and other rivals are taking sales and shoppers away from the grocer.Same-store sales excluding fuel rose 1.5% last quarter, short of projections, and while earnings narrowly beat analysts’ estimates, profit margins decreased again because of investments the company’s making to keep pace with the competition.Kroger, America’s biggest traditional supermarket chain, has found life more difficult amid the rock-bottom prices and improved quality offered by discounters like Walmart and Germany’s Aldi. It doesn’t help that Dollar General Corp. is beefing up its grocery section, adding more fresh and frozen food while entering more urban markets with stores that cater to millennials. Even drugstores sell plenty of food nowadays, which has prompted Kroger to partner with Walgreens to sell groceries in some locations.“While the results generally met expectations, the other large retailers of food that we cover performed a little better,” Joe Feldman, an analyst at Telsey Advisory Group, said in a note.Digital SalesIn response, Kroger is pushing hard to bolster online sales, which grew 42% last quarter. The company has also tested autonomous deliveries in Texas and Arizona. About 35 million more Americans are now buying food online compared with a year ago, according to Coresight Research, but penetration is still below markets like the U.K. Kroger generated about $5 billion in digital sales last year, and by the end of this year it plans to offer pickup or delivery service for all of its U.S. shoppers, up from about 90% last year.The shares sank as much as 5.1% to $22.43 in New York Thursday. They had already lost 14% this year through Wednesday’s close, compared with double-digit increases for both Walmart and the benchmark S&P 500.Kroger’s e-commerce investments, as well as a partnership with Microsoft Corp. to roll out digital shelf labels and explore other next-generation technology, have dented profitability in the short term, sending investors elsewhere.Profit excluding some items amounted to 72 cents a share in the period that ended May 25, exceeding the average analyst estimate by a penny. Kroger reiterated its full-year sales and profit guidance.To contact the reporter on this story: Matthew Boyle in New York at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Crayton Harrison at email@example.com, Lisa Wolfson, Anne Riley MoffatFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- As Slack Technologies Inc. flips a switch later Thursday and becomes a public company, it’s another sign of how far the world has progressed beyond the old times of corporate technology. What’s different now is that it actually matters what you want.Until the last decade or so, the technology that workers used in office jobs was largely chosen by bosses far above them. The computer at the desk, the email system, the software that workers used to keep track of expenses or crunch a business unit’s finances were all imposed on them. And it was frequently terrible, because ease of use wasn’t necessarily an important quality to sell software. Cubicle jockeys have a lot more say in what tech they use at work these days. Relatively young software from the likes of Slack, Box Inc., Zoom Video Communications Inc., Google’s G Suite and SurveyMonkey parent SVMK Inc. have free or inexpensive versions for people to try by themselves. The idea is that a few workers will test it out unofficially and like it enough to persuade their employers to pay for the tech because it helps them do their jobs more effectively. And many companies are listening. This “bottom-up” business strategy has become a standard approach for cloud software aimed at businesses. Similar tactics were key for Amazon Web Services and other services used by technical specialists inside companies, and that has spread to more departments.Slack is perhaps the apotheosis of the bottom-up boom. Video conferencing or spreadsheet software can be useful even if one person at a company uses it. But team communication software like Slack is truly only handy if a critical mass of people are using it. That’s why Slack needs to win over workers and then persuade their bosses to pay for versions that are tuned to a corporation’s security and data-compliance needs. (Bloomberg Beta, the venture capital arm of Bloomberg LP, is an investor in Slack.)Some things in corporate IT don’t change, though. Young cloud software companies like Slack still court systems-integration firms that customize technology for corporations and other large organizations. The bottom-up crew also builds sales teams to pitch software at big companies, and those salespeople still get expensive cars when they sign up big customers.And like the Oracle and Microsoft of old, young companies still want to stitch their software into many other corporate technologies, which makes their product harder to ditch. They want, in short, to become a “platform” — a word that appeared 39 times in Slack’s prospectus for potential investors and more than 300 times in Zoom Video’s IPO document in April. Another thing that hasn’t changed from software’s olden days, at least for Slack, is a dependence on a relatively small number of big customers. Slack says it has more than 10 million daily users and 600,000 organizations that pay for use by three or more people. But about 40% of Slack’s revenue in the latest fiscal year came from just 575 organizations writing at least $100,000 in annualized checks to Slack. The company might be bottom-up in strategy, but it still needs the whale customers to pay its bills. Slack isn’t alone in this regard. Domo Inc., which makes corporate data analysis software, generates nearly half of its revenue from 450 top-paying customers. At Zoom, a few hundred customers generate 30% of revenue. Of course, some kinds of technologies — think databases or inventory-management systems — aren’t likely to appeal to employees and instead are pitched straight to tech-buying executives. That probably won’t stop startups from trying the new approach, though.Courting the rank-and-file is now standard procedure for many types of software. But one old fashioned tactic has lasting appeal: Persuade big companies to write big checks. A version of this column originally appeared in Bloomberg’s Fully Charged technology newsletter. You can sign up here. To contact the author of this story: Shira Ovide at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Daniel Niemi at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Shira Ovide is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering technology. She previously was a reporter for the Wall Street Journal.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Microsoft (MSFT) is at a 52-week high, but can investors hope for more gains in the future? We take a look at the company's fundamentals for clues.
DXC Technology's (DXC) Innovation Centre in London will leverage its expertise in machine learning, AI, IoT, blockchain and robotics to develop solutions for various sectors.
On June 19, the Fed concluded its two-day meeting and provided a press release. As widely expected, the Fed kept the policy changes unchanged. The Fed indicated that it's open to interest rate cuts.
Microsoft's Linkedin, a social network for professionals, on Thursday said it would add 800 new jobs to its European headquaters in Dublin, the latest technology company to boost its presence in Ireland. The move underscores signs that hiring in Ireland remains robust despite neighbouring Britain's planned departure from the Europe Union and a slowdown in global economic growth.
(Bloomberg) -- Oracle Corp.’s shares climbed after the world’s second-largest software maker returned to sales growth and gave a forecast indicating the momentum may continue. For investors, the results were a reprieve amid the company’s uneven transition to cloud-based computing.Revenue increased 1.1% to $11.1 billion in the period ended May 31 from a year earlier, the Redwood City, California-based company said Wednesday in a statement. Analysts, on average, projected $10.9 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Oracle said sales will grow as much as 2% in the current period.Chief Executive Officers Safra Catz and Mark Hurd have sought to maintain Oracle’s large customer base as the company competes with a dizzying number of rivals in the cloud-computing space. The software maker’s stumbles against Amazon.com Inc. and others have spurred the company to seek help from unlikely sources. Earlier this month, Oracle announced an alliance with longtime rival Microsoft Corp., letting customers use their respective clouds.The period marked Oracle’s first year-over-year increase in total revenue since the fiscal first quarter.Oracle shares jumped about 5% in extended trading after closing at $52.68 in New York. The stock has gained 17% this year.Profit, excluding some expenses, will be 80 cents to 82 cents a share in the period that ends in August, Catz said on a conference call. The forecast is in line with Wall Street’s average estimate of 81 cents. Oracle reported an adjusted profit of $1.16 a share in the fiscal fourth quarter, compared with estimates of $1.07 a share.Pat Walravens, an analyst at JMP Securities, said Oracle’s sales and profit outlook brought relief to concerned investors.“These are small numbers but we seem to be making some progress,’’ Walravens said in an interview. “Oracle is doing a nice job on the applications side, but on the infrastructure side you’re competing against Microsoft, Amazon Web Services and the Google Cloud. That remains highly competitive.’’Larry Ellison, Oracle’s billionaire co-founder and executive chairman, said some corporate applications for the cloud are finally boosting overall growth, even as product lines like the company’s data-broker business declined.“We are focused on our star products and our star products are now driving the top line higher,” Ellison said on the call. “We have these other businesses that are melting away and we just don’t care.”Cloud license and on-premise license sales increased 12% to $2.52 billion, suggesting that Oracle is doing a better job of signing on new customers. The company said that revenue from NetSuite grew 32%, and Fusion HR and financial suites gained by the same amount. Hurd has been keen to chase growth by selling apps and set a target for attaining 50% market share to best rival SAP SE.Revenue from cloud services and license support was unchanged at $6.8 billion in the quarter, Oracle said. While that metric includes revenue from hosting customers’ data on the cloud, a large portion is generated by maintenance fees for traditional software housed on clients’ servers. The unit accounted for more than 60% of total revenue.Sales of Oracle’s servers declined 11% in the period. Catz said the company has chosen to “downsize our low-margin legacy hardware business,” which Oracle acquired when it bought Sun Microsystems.Oracle has been firing workers around the world to cut expenses. The company’s adjusted operating margin reached 47%, the highest in five years. The company’s costs related to restructuring also doubled to $168 million in the quarter compared with a year earlier.The deal between Oracle and Microsoft will allow mutual customers to connect databases on Oracle’s cloud to applications on Microsoft’s Azure cloud. The agreement signified a concession by Oracle that it won’t be able to compete against Amazon Web Services alone. AWS offers cheaper versions of the databases that make up Oracle’s core business.To contact the reporter on this story: Nico Grant in San Francisco at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, Andrew Pollack, Molly SchuetzFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Dell, HP and Microsoft, which together account for 52% of the notebooks and detachable tablets sold in the United States, said the proposed tariffs would increase the cost of laptops in the country. The move would hurt consumers and the industry, and would not address the Chinese trade practices that the Trump administration's office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) seeks to remedy, the four companies said in a joint statement posted online https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=USTR-2019-0004-2010.
On June 18, Facebook (FB) launched Libra, its own cryptocurrency. On the same day, CoinDesk published another piece of blockchain news that didn’t receive as much fanfare as Facebook’s Libra news. Was the timing a coincidence? We think not.
(MSFT) stock (ticker: MSFT) is hovering at all-time highs, with a market cap just above $1 trillion, giving it about a $70 billion lead on Amazon (AMZN) for the title of World’s Most Valuable Company. Deutsche Bank analyst Karl Keirstead this morning repeated his Buy rating on the stock, boosting his price target to $155 from $145. Keirstead writes in a research note that in a 90-minute meeting with the CFOs of two of Microsoft’s businesses, neither mentioned seeing any softening or change in enterprise demand.
(Bloomberg) -- Of the five biggest tech companies in the U.S., Microsoft is the only one that isn't currently in the crosshairs of U.S. antitrust authorities. The software giant already took its turn through the regulatory wringer starting two decades ago, a years-long confrontation that resulted in the finding that the Redmond, Washington-based company had illegally maintained its monopoly for personal-computer operating-system software. The case dealt with the company's moves to kneecap the Netscape web browser by bundling its own product, Internet Explorer, into Windows, the dominant PC operating system.A federal judge ordered the company split in two in 2000, a fate Microsoft avoided when an appeals court reversed that part of the ruling and the company eventually settled. That 2002 settlement led to nine years of court supervision of the company's business practices and required Microsoft to give the top 20 computer makers identical contract terms for licensing Windows, and gave computer makers greater freedom to promote non-Microsoft products like browsers and media-playing software. Because observers and legal pundits almost uniformly agree the software giant did virtually everything wrong in the course of the investigation -- which had its start as early as 1990, followed by a 1998 Justice Department lawsuit -- in retrospect its story serves as a useful instruction manual of what not to do.While no formal inquiries have yet been opened, the Federal Trade Commission and Justice Department carved up the territory of big tech -- Amazon.com Inc., Apple Inc., Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Facebook Inc. -- as they prepare to dig in on antitrust issues. The Department of Justice will look at Google, which dominates the online search and advertising spaces, and Apple, whose pervasive App Store is likely to be under examination. The FTC drew Facebook, with its behemoth social networking and messaging apps and a slew of recent privacy missteps, and e-commerce giant Amazon, which has been pushing into areas like grocery and health. As these companies build their legal teams and prepare strategies for the fight ahead, here are several lessons that Google, Amazon, Apple and Facebook can learn from Microsoft's battle with the feds.Don't deny the obvious. Or don't even put up a fight about whether you have a monopoly. Microsoft, whose Windows software accounted for about 90% of the market for PC operating systems, opted to argue that the space was actually competitive. Parts of the argument included videos where Microsoft employees offered a straight-faced marketing pitch for the benefits of rival Linux programs with a tiny share of the market. The impulse is understandable -- monopoly sounds like a dirty word. But U.S. antitrust law doesn't expressly forbid having a monopoly; it outlaws doing certain things to establish, maintain or extend one. That led some legal scholars to argue that Microsoft would have been better served by copping to the Windows monopoly and establishing a legal beachhead against the idea that it did anything illegal to gain it or keep it. Arguing against something so self-evident via the company's very first witness strained credibility and started the case off on a bad footing.It's easy to imagine a similar issue applying to Google, which has more than 84% of the web-search market and controls 82% of mobile-phone operating systems. In the app-store business, Google and iPhone maker Apple together control more than 95% of all U.S. mobile app spending by consumers, according to Sensor Tower data. Apple CEO Tim Cook earlier this month told CBS that his company doesn’t have a dominant position in any market. But regulators may look at the power it wields through its app store. It could be more effective for these companies not to start by denying that leadership position -- if you have 80% or 90% percent of a market, arguing that you don't really dominate isn't the hill you want your legal reasoning to die on. Don’t resort to spin. Microsoft's credibility with the press was no higher, hurt by constant counterfactual statements and spin. Each day, after a bruising in court as government lawyer David Boies poked holes in executive testimony and Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson alternated between chuckling at the witnesses and chastising them, Microsoft deployed a hapless PR person to the steps of the courthouse to recite the words, "Today was another good day for Microsoft." It never was. Assume everything will be made public.Among the list of horrifying moments for Microsoft in court was the public showing of parts of the 20 hours of depositions of co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Bill Gates. The tapes (yes, they were tapes -- this was the 90s) showed an ill-lit, evasive and combative Gates engaging in Clintonian word-wrangling, such as asking about the definition of the word "definition" and arguing what "market share" meant. Microsoft claimed it had been assured the tapes would never be shown in court, or the company would have taken greater care with Gates’s appearance and manner. During their playback in court, the judge laughed at several points -- not the impression the software giant wanted to make on either Jackson or the public. Jackson told New Yorker reporter Ken Auletta that Gates came off as "arrogant" in the depositions.Just as bad for Microsoft, an array of internal emails were read aloud in court that contradicted the testimony of its executives, which further angered Jackson. The takeaway? Assume everything will be aired in the court of public opinion. If it was true 20 years ago, it’s even more apparent in the current era of oversharing, thanks to the tech companies’ own services. Don't be condescending about the technology. Most lawyers, judges and regulators don't appreciate being told or having it implied that they lack the ability to apprehend certain tech concepts. Or that the reason they think there's been an antitrust violation is because they just don't "get" the technology. It was true that Jackson and Boies seldom used a computer at the time. But it didn't require a computer science doctorate to divine the legal merits of the case. At the height of Microsoft's hubris (or carelessness, or both), the company sent Windows chief Jim Allchin to the stand with a doctored video that purported to show how computing performance would be degraded when the browser was removed from Windows on a single PC. It was actually done on several different computers and was an illustration of what might happen rather than a factual test, as the company initially claimed -- a fact that came to light only after several days of the government picking through every inconsistency in the video. Microsoft remade the simulation several times in an effort to save the testimony. The company seemed to think it could get away with baldy stating a technological claim and mocking up something that backed it up, perhaps reasoning that no one would know the difference, but it miscalculated badly (Joe Nocera, now a Bloomberg columnist but then writing for Fortune, recounts the whole cringeworthy story).Choose your lawyers wisely.Microsoft took on the U.S. government led by a combative Gates and an equally aggressive general counsel, Bill Neukom. Gates, the son of an attorney, was outraged, frustrated and convinced the company was being unfairly targeted. One of the company’s outside lawyers, from the firm Sullivan & Cromwell, said the company could put a ham sandwich into Windows if it wanted to. And throughout, Neukom not only failed to tamp down his executives’ worst impulses, he seemed to amp them up. His legal style led observers to point out that his last name -- pronounced `nuke 'em’ -- was quite fitting.The U.S. government’s latest antitrust targets should take heed: If your top executive's style tends towards waving a red flag in front of a bull, you may be wise to consider a top lawyer with a more conciliatory style. Google’s top executives have already raised the ire of lawmakers for refusing to appear before Congress, and no one has ever accused Jeff Bezos of being afraid of a fight. At Facebook, where Zuckerberg regards Gates as a mentor and observers see similarities in their styles and temperaments, this lesson might be particularly important.There are many different ways to lose.Right now, the companies are only at risk of an inquiry -- the agencies are deciding what, if any, action to take. But even at this stage, they should keep in mind that a loss doesn’t only mean a full-scale breakup or forced divestiture. Companies can avoid that extreme fate and still find, as Microsoft did, that the years of distraction from the fight have hampered their business and sucked up executive time and mental energy.In an interview last year at the Code Conference, Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith lamented the distraction the case caused, and cited it as a reason the company missed out on the search market -- the business that fueled the runaway success of Google, now under the microscope itself. Others have pinned Microsoft’s abysmal performance in mobile computing partially on constraints and distractions from the case. Some of the company’s business missteps can fairly be attributed to poor execution and strategic errors that had nothing to do with the government dispute. Still, the notion that merely fighting an antitrust battle may do almost as much harm as losing one brings us to our last point.Consider settling early. It's hard to say with certainty what the late 1990s and early 2000s might have looked like for Microsoft had it found a way to settle with the government earlier than 2002. Still, for the government’s current targets, it's worth weighing a settlement against the impact of several years of investigation, a possible loss in court and potentially harsher restrictions or remedies. Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google probably have a pretty good idea of what regulators may object to, and it’s worthwhile for them to consider ways to assuage those concerns while keeping the core of their businesses and future ambitions intact. The alternative is years of investigations, possibly damaging evidence and testimony, and ample distraction, all leading up to what could be a devastating loss in court. (Updates with earlier comments from Tim Cook. A previous version of this story corrected the attribution of an anecdote about a ham sandwich.)To contact the author of this story: Dina Bass in Seattle at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, Mark MilianFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Microsoft seems to be trying to set aside some business rivalries if it believes that working with a rival could help it achieve its bigger-picture goal. In the videogame market, for instance, Microsoft and Sony compete for gaming console customers, but Microsoft looks willing to work with Sony if doing so will allow it to capture a larger share of the videogame market.