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Microsoft (MSFT) is expected to report fiscal third quarter earnings on Thursday, April 18th. The whisper number is $0.73, five cents ahead of the analysts' estimate. Whispers range from a low of $0.64 to a high of $0.80. MSFT has a 55% positive surprise history (having topped the whisper in 32 of the 58 earnings reports for which we have data).

Earnings history:

- Beat whisper: 32 qtrs
- Met whisper: 1 qtrs
- Missed whisper: 25 qtrs

Our primary focus is on post earnings price movement. Knowing how likely a stock's price will move following an earnings report can help you determine the best action to take (long or short). In other words, we look at what happens when the company beats or misses the whisper number expectation.

The table below indicates the average post earnings price movement within a one and thirty trading day timeframe:

(click to enlarge)

The strongest price movement of -2.8% comes within ten trading days when the company reports earnings that beat the whisper number, and -3.3% within thirty trading days when the company reports earnings that miss the whisper number. Beat or miss the whisper number and the average price movement through thirty trading days when the company reports earnings is negative.

The table below indicates the most recent earnings reports and short-term price reaction:

(click to enlarge)

In the comparable quarter last year, the company reported earnings in-line with the whisper number. Following that report the stock realized a 3.5% gain in after hours trading, and added an additional 1.1% in one trading day. Last quarter the company reported earnings one cent short of the whisper number. Following that report, the stock realized a 0.2% loss in after hours trading, but turned and saw a 1.0% gain in one trading day. Overall historical data indicates the company to be (on average) a negative price reactor through thirty trading days when the company reports earnings.

Enter your expectation and view more earnings information here, or let us know your expectation in the comments section below.

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Since 1998, WhisperNumber.com has been tracking and publishing "crowd sourced estimates" for earnings. We call these earnings expectations whisper numbers. Our whisper numbers are gained from individual investors and traders just like you that have registered with our site. While the whisper number itself is an important part of our analysis, a company's "price reaction" to beating or missing the whisper number expectation is the key. On average, companies that exceed the whisper are "rewarded," while companies that miss are "punished" following an earnings report.

Source: Whisper Number Impact: Earnings Preview For Microsoft