Earnings Preview: Microsoft Reports Results Thursday

| About: Microsoft Corporation (MSFT)

Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is expected to report last fiscal quarter's results after the closing bell on January 19, 2012. Let's review how Microsoft has performed in recent quarters.

Microsoft Corporation develops, licenses, and supports a range of software products and services for various computing devices worldwide. The company was founded in 1975 and is headquartered in Redmond, Washington. MSFT trades an average of 52.4 million shares per day. Click here to read my other Microsoft-related articles.

52 Week High: $29.46
52 Week Low: $23.65
Book Value: $7.06
Float Short: 0.90%

Analysts are expecting an improvement of $0.09 in earnings per share compared to last quarter's results of $0.68. A beat of $0.77 per share, will top the estimated per share earnings.Analyst estimates range between $0.68 and $0.85 per share.

The current trailing twelve months P/E ratio is 10.5. The forward P/E ratio is 10.36. I am bullish long term with Microsoft. While I have written several articles about Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) giving no quarter to Microsoft and Bing search as well as the smartphone space, Microsoft is none the less a cash printing machine one should consider for retirement and or long term investing.

Investors have been rewarded with an increase of year-over-year revenue. Revenue reported was $69.94 billion for 2011 vs. $62.48 billion for 2010. The bottom line has rising earnings year-over-year of $23.15 billion for 2011 vs. $18.76 billion for 2010. The company's earnings before interest and taxes are rising, with an EBIT year-over-year of $27.16 billion for 2011 vs. $24.10 billion for 2010.Rising revenue along with rising earnings is a very good sign and what we want to see with our companies. Be sure to check the margins to make sure that the bottom line is keeping up with the top line.

Here is a look at the fiscal year revenue:

paid2trade.com revenue gross bar chart for MSFT

Gross reported revenue compared to the mean estimate (rounded):

Fiscal Quarter Ending Month-Year Revenue Estimates Actual $ Difference Difference %
Sep-11 $ 17.24 B $ 17.37 B $ 135.10 M 0.78%
Jun-11 $ 17.23 B $ 17.37 B $ 136.80 M 0.79%
Mar-11 $ 16.19 B $ 16.43 B $ 233.80 M 1.44%
Dec-10 $ 19.15 B $ 19.95 B $ 806.10 M 4.21%
Sep-10 $ 15.80 B $ 16.20 B $ 392.70 M 2.49%

M = millions, B = billions.
Differences are rounded.
Some onetime items are often excluded in reported EPS.

paid2trade.com Quarterly Estimates And Actual EPS results MSFT Reported earnings per share compared to the mean estimate. Differences are rounded.

The total short interest number of shares for MSFT:

paid2trade.com short interest tool. The total short interest number of shares for MSFT

The number of days to cover short interest based on average daily trading volume for MSFT:

paid2trade.com number of days to cover short interest based on average daily trading volume for MSFT

I use a proprietary blend of technical analysis, financial crowd behavior, and fundamentals in my short-term trades, and while not totally the same in longer swing trades to investments, the concepts used are similar. You may want to use this article as a starting point of your own research with your financial planner. I use Seeking Alpha, Edgar Online, and Yahoo Finance for most of my data. I use the confirmed symbols from earnings.com that I believe to be of the most interest.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, but may initiate a long position in GOOG, MSFT over the next 72 hours.