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MSFT Up Slightly As Market Rally Loses Steam
Stocks are mixed today, and shares of MSFT are trading relatively flat, up slightly at 0.5% midday. Upcoming catalysts include continued upgrade cycles of Office 2010 and Windows 7; any entrance into the tablet market (even just as an operating system); Windows Phone 7 adoption; strides against current market leaders in cloud computing; and holiday sales of Kinect. The stock currently trades at 8x Enterprise Value / TTM Free Cash Flow, inexpensive compared to historical trading multiples.
Microsoft Alternative To Mafia War In China (All Things Digital)
The public battle between Chinese Internet giant Tencent and antivirus software company Qihoo 360, referred to by some as “small gang” (Qihoo 360) vs. “mafia” (Tencent), has led to a spike in new users for other firms, including Microsoft. New user sign-ups in China for Microsoft’s MSN Messenger have gone “from tens of thousands normally to millions” per day since the flare-up between the two Chinese companies began.
Microsoft’s Windows 7 Phone Could Be An Enterprise Play (eWeek)
Dell is dumping Blackberry for its own phone. This announcement is significant for Microsoft in several ways. First and foremost Dell wouldn’t make this device its corporate platform of choice if it didn’t support the level of security and software integration that is required for the enterprise. It’s a Windows phone, and earlier versions have been the BlackBerry alternative for years. In fact, many enterprises have clung to their older Windows Mobile phones long after they became obsolete because they support security features and applications that those companies need. W7P could be a corporate play.
Steve Ballmer Sells A Boatload Of Stock For A Billion Dollar Plus Payday (Minyanville)
Steve Ballmer disclosed in an SEC filing that he unloaded 49.3 million shares, or about 12% of his total Microsoft stake, last week, at prices ranging from $26.74 to $27.18 a share. All told, Ballmer will pocket a staggering $1.34 billion from this mega-transaction. Obviously, this was a nice payday for Ballmer, and one that’s awfully hard to ignore. After all, when insiders like Ballmer start dumping company stock, it’s generally worth taking a closer look.