Microsoft stock just hit an all-time high
Microsoft doesn’t get a lot of press attention these days, particularly compared to Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook, or even Twitter.
But that doesn’t really matter, because Microsoft is doing better than ever. The company’s stock hit an all-time high of $60.30 on the Nasdaq composite Friday, roughly 11 times the $5.48 share price at the end of 1995.
Microsoft’s previous high was in … you guessed it, 1999, at the height of Microsoft’s PC dominance and right around the peak of the first internet boom.
The new stock high comes on the heels of a very positive quarterly earnings report, which has become routine for Microsoft under CEO Satya Nadella. The story is relatively straightforward: Losses from people abandoning Windows-powered devices are being more than offset by rapid gains from Microsoft’s cloud computing business.
Additionally, Microsoft has reoriented its consumer-facing business to focus on specific products, such as Microsoft Office and the Surface tablet — and those have been generating more revenue.
The one concern could be the company’s heavy reliance on cloud computing, which provides the backbone for many services on the internet. And thanks to incursions by Amazon and Google, cloud services are becoming an extremely competitive business.
As the Wall Street Journal points out, when Microsoft’s cloud unit missed analyst estimates in April, the stock took a sharp dive, before rebounding in the summer.
So on the whole, Microsoft has been getting much more boring. But as a result, business has perhaps never been better.