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Microsoft shares plunge over 11% after Microsoft Surface RT inventory write-down, earnings shortfall

Posted: , posted by Alan F.

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Microsoft shares plunge over 11% after Microsoft Surface RT inventory write-down, earnings shortfall
Shares of Microsoft plunged 11.4% on Friday, closing down $4.04 to $31.40. For Microsoft, it was the sharpest one-day decline of the company's shares in 11 years and came after the company reported its quarterly earnings. Yes, Microsoft earned nearly $5 billion for the three month period, but a $900 million write-off of Microsoft Surface RT tablets held in inventory rattled investors along with a gigantic 16 cents a share earnings shortfall for the quarter. The Redmond based software giant reported 59 cents a share in earnings while Wall Street's consensus was for 75 cents.

If you are a contrarian, here is a stat of interest. As recently as April, 60% of the analysts covering the stock had a 'buy' signal on the shares. Today, that number is down to 25% which is a 20 year low. Of course, the earnings miss didn't help in that department. It was the biggest gap the company had between reported and estimated earnings over 38 quarters. You have to go back to January 2004 for the last time Microsoft disappointed the Street so badly with its quarterly numbers.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer tried to get traders to look at the future of the Surface tablets instead of the past. He said, "We are working hard to deliver compelling new devices and high value experiences from Microsoft and our partners in the coming months, including new Windows 8.1 tablets and PCs." The retail price of the Microsoft Surface RT had been recently slashed by as much as 30% to $349 for the 32GB model and $449 for the 64GB slate.

Microsoft shares plunge on Friday

source: Breakout, MicrosoftNews via WMPoweruser

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