Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is set to report its third quarter results Thursday after closing bell, and analysts are expecting the company’s results to be mixed. The company narrowly beat estimates in January, and PC sales have been especially weak in recent months.
Analysts at RBC Capital Markets released a report to investors today ahead of Thursday’s report. They’re looking for 69 cents earnings per share on $20.42 billion in revenue. Their numbers are just under consensus, which is 68 cents per share on $20.54 billion in revenue.
One of the biggest reasons investors check into Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s earnings every quarter is to see how PC sales are going, and RBC Capital analysts expect the company’s earnings call to focus on that precise thing. They’re looking for details on demand for Windows 7 and 8, Office 2013 and 365 and the company’s new Surface tablets.
The analysts will also be looking at enterprise demand, which could be an important indicated for overall enterprise software spending across the entire industry. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) is the first software company to release its March numbers.
They note that Microsoft has been struggling against a few headwinds. Windows 8 adoption has been uneven, and the company faces a $732 million fine levied by the European Union because it broke its promise of offering European Windows users choices in rival browsers. In addition, the company will likely headwinds from FX throughout the rest of this year.
RBC Capital reduced their estimates for Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) because of the EU fine and also headwinds from the sluggish PC market and FX. They trimmed their price target for the stock by $1 to $32 per share.
They said that if there is an upside to Microsoft’s March report, it will likely come from earnings per share.
As of the moment of this writing, shares of Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) were up 1 percent since opening bell.