Microsoft will try to keep up with the blistering pace it set during the fiscal first quarter of 2008 when it reports earnings for the second quarter on Thursday, Jan. 24, after the markets closed.
Today, the stock started off up slightly after Goldman Sachs analyst Sara Friar added it back to the financial giant’s “Americas Conviction Buy List.” Friar is bullish on the upcoming earnings announcement and the late February launch of Windows Server 2008 and associated products.
Microsoft should also benefit from solid PC sales growth in the quarter, which hit 15.5 percent according data released yesterday by IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker. Gartner’s growth estimate was slightly lower for the quarter: 13.1 percent. A huge chunk of Microsoft’s Windows revenue comes from sales of software pre-installed on new PCs, so the PC growth rate dictates a large part of the company’s financial results. But at least one PC tracker sees a slowdown ahead.More