Bullish options flow was detected in MSFT stock on January 17, 2020.

Microsoft (MSFT) will unveil a major ad campaign for its work-communication app Teams which has been competing with Slack (WORK) for dominance in the work chat space, CNBC’s Megan Graham reports, citing Jared Spataro, corporate VP for Microsoft 365. The ad campaign will aim to sell “The Power of Teams” and will launch in the U.S. during NFL playoffs Sunday. Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/01/17/microsoft-launches-global-ad-campaign-for-teams-slack-competitor.html

On January 16, 2020, Wells Fargo analyst Philip Winslow raised his price target for Microsoft to $185 from $180, while keeping an Overweight rating on the shares. Philip anticipates continued healthy growth in software spending in 2020 and expects software stocks as a whole to relatively outperform the market. Winslow says that the next decade will bring “massive advances” toward a more fully connected and immersive world – one in which artificial intelligence and machine learning, natural language processing, augmented reality, 5G, edge/fog, and the Internet of Things mature and become both commonplace and transformative. He expects software to be a key enabler of this increasingly connected decade.

On January 15, 2020, Morgan Stanley analysts reported results from the firm’s quarterly survey of 100 U.S. and European Chief Information Officers, or CIO. Keith Weiss noted that the survey supported his thesis that Microsoft (MSFT) remains well-exposed to secular themes topping the CIO priority list. Microsoft regained its top spot as the largest IT share gainer over the next three years over Amazon (AMZN) and CIOs’ preference for Microsoft as the preferred hybrid cloud vendor “has become increasingly apparent,” said Weiss, who keeps an Overweight rating and $189 price target on the shares.

On January 14, 2020, Wells Fargo analyst Philip Winslow raised his price target for Microsoft to $180 from $160 after IDC and Gartner released PC shipment data for the fourth quarter of 2019. Gartner and IDC reported year-over-year shipment increases of 2.3% and 4.8%, respectively, and both noted that the third consecutive quarter of growth was attributable to the strong demand in the commercial segment for Windows 10 upgrades as Windows 7 support ends this month. Philip has an Overweight rating on the shares and thinks Microsoft can deliver mid-to-high teens EPS and FCFPS growth as the headwinds from a declining PC market and the transition to the cloud abate further. Recurring subscription revenue from Azure and Office 365 continues to grow rapidly.

Microsoft Corp. will publish fiscal year 2020 second-quarter financial results after the close of the market on Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2020, on the Microsoft Investor Relations website at https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/Investor/. A live webcast of the earnings conference call will be made available at 2:30 p.m. Pacific Time.

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