Microsoft Co. (NASDAQ:MSFT) was the target of a significant drop in short interest during the month of August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 42,068,394 shares, a drop of 5.7% from the August 15th total of 44,633,868 shares. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 19,950,534 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 2.1 days. Approximately 0.6% of the shares of the company are short sold.

MSFT stock opened at $113.37 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.94, a current ratio of 2.90 and a quick ratio of 2.86. Microsoft has a 12 month low of $72.92 and a 12 month high of $113.73. The company has a market capitalization of $860.14 billion, a PE ratio of 29.22, a PEG ratio of 2.14 and a beta of 1.26.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 19th. The software giant reported $1.13 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.08 by $0.05. Microsoft had a net margin of 15.02% and a return on equity of 36.69%. The company had revenue of $30.09 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $29.23 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.75 earnings per share. Microsoft’s revenue was up 17.5% compared to the same quarter last year. equities research analysts predict that Microsoft will post 4.25 EPS for the current year.

A number of research firms recently issued reports on MSFT. Royal Bank of Canada restated a “buy” rating and set a $124.00 price objective on shares of Microsoft in a report on Monday, September 3rd. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Microsoft from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a report on Friday, August 31st. Morgan Stanley reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $130.00 target price on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Tuesday, August 28th. Barclays reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $117.00 target price on shares of Microsoft in a research note on Friday, August 10th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group set a $125.00 target price on shares of Microsoft and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, August 27th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating, thirty have issued a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $119.49.

In related news, CMO Christopher C. Capossela sold 23,337 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, September 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $109.22, for a total transaction of $2,548,867.14. Following the completion of the sale, the chief marketing officer now owns 190,570 shares in the company, valued at $20,814,055.40. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, CEO Satya Nadella sold 328,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $109.44, for a total transaction of $35,896,320.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 778,596 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $85,209,546.24. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 650,042 shares of company stock valued at $71,264,850 in the last 90 days. 1.49% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 0.8% in the second quarter. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC now owns 61,413 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $6,056,000 after buying an additional 463 shares during the period. Progressive Investment Management Corp increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 0.7% in the second quarter. Progressive Investment Management Corp now owns 71,588 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $7,022,000 after buying an additional 468 shares during the period. Green Square Capital LLC increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 3.1% in the second quarter. Green Square Capital LLC now owns 15,502 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $1,529,000 after buying an additional 470 shares during the period. Valmark Advisers Inc. increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 4.8% in the second quarter. Valmark Advisers Inc. now owns 10,295 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $1,015,000 after buying an additional 476 shares during the period. Finally, BKS Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Microsoft by 4.6% in the second quarter. BKS Advisors LLC now owns 10,816 shares of the software giant’s stock worth $1,067,000 after buying an additional 477 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 71.87% of the company’s stock.

About Microsoft

Microsoft Corporation develops, licenses, and supports software, services, devices, and solutions worldwide. The company operates through Productivity and Business Processes, Intelligent Cloud, and More Personal Computing segments. The Productivity and Business Processes segment offers Office 365 commercial products and services for businesses, such as Office, Exchange, SharePoint, Skype for Business, Microsoft Teams, and related Client Access Licenses (CALs); Office 365 consumer services, including Skype, Outlook.com, and OneDrive; LinkedIn online professional network; and Dynamics business solutions comprising financial management, enterprise resource planning, customer relationship management, supply chain management, and analytics applications for small and medium businesses, large organizations, and divisions of enterprises.

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