Microsoft earnings: 84 cents a share vs 72 cents EPS expected

Microsoft earnings: 84 cents a share vs 72 cents EPS expected

Microsoft reported adjusted per-share earnings of 84 cents. Office 365 subscribers hit 28 million.

Following the Microsoft FQ1 2018 earnings release, the company's stock surged in after-hours trades, climbing by as much as 2.51% to $80.74. The rise in subscription sales for Azure and for corporate and consumer versions of Office 365 also provides more stable and recurring revenue.

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Under chief executive Satya Nadella, Microsoft's cloud business - which includes products such as Office 365, Dynamic 365 and the flagship Azure computing platform - has emerged as a major growth driver.

More Personal Computing revenue was relatively flat year over year at $9.4 billion as Windows OEM revenue grew 4% and Windows commercial products and cloud revenue increased 7%. For those keeping score at home, Microsoft's commercial cloud rollup includes Azure; Office 365 business services (Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Skype for Business Online, Microsoft Teams); Dynamics 365; and its Enterprise Mobility + Security Suite (EMS). But the big number as always was Azure revenue, which grew 90 percent.

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In terms of guidance, analysts are looking for Microsoft to hit 83 cents in earnings per share, excluding certain items, and $28.15 billion in revenue in the second quarter, which will end on December 31, according to Thomson Reuters. Search acquisition costs jumped 15 percent. The overall market has continued to contract, and Microsoft's Surface devices fluctuate in popularity based on competition and when new devices hit store shelves. Gaming revenue, however, only increased 1 percent, even as Xbox software and services revenue was up 21 percent. The segment declined earlier in 2017 owing to aging Surface Pro products that consumers shunned. The company had guided for between $23 billion and $23.7 billion, and in the year-ago quarter. To Productivity and Business Processes, LinkedIn contributed $1.1 billion. Analysts had estimated $8 billion.

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