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Microsoft Revenue Climbs, Profits Fall

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Microsoft has released its quarterly financial report for its second fiscal quarter, which ended Dec. 31. In general, the numbers aligned with what Wall Street analysts had expected: sales were slightly higher than last year, while earnings were slightly lower.

Janet I. Tu from The Seattle Times reported, "While there was no huge jump in numbers fueled by Windows 8, there were no disasters either, as Microsoft on Thursday announced quarterly financial results that were largely in line with Wall Street's expectations. The company fell slightly short of revenue forecasts but exceeded estimates on earnings per share, even as its profit dropped from a year ago. Recent reports of declining PC sales had led to lower analyst expectations."

The Wall Street Journals' Shira Ovide added, "The Redmond, Wash., software maker on Thursday posted a 3.7% decline in net income to $6.38 billion, or 76 cents a share, for its fiscal second quarter, down from $6.62 billion, or 78 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue rose 2.7% to $21.5 billion from $20.9 billion a year earlier."

Nick Wingfield with The New York Times noted, "Microsoft’s biggest product in decades, Windows 8, helped lift sales of the company’s flagship operating system business, but not enough to rejuvenate overall growth.... It said its revenue from its Windows business, which accounts for more than a quarter of total company revenue, rose 24 percent to $5.88 billion for the fiscal second quarter ended Dec. 31. Those figures, however, included revenue from Windows sales before the product was officially available last November. Microsoft was required to defer that revenue because of accounting rules. Without it, Windows sales would have grown only 11 percent."

PCMag's Damon Poeter observed, "Microsoft on Thursday credited strong enterprise-driven demand and the introduction of Windows 8 and other new products for record sales numbers in the software giant's fiscal second quarter. 'Our big, bold ambition to re-imagine Windows as well as launch Surface and Windows Phone 8 has sparked growing enthusiasm with our customers and unprecedented opportunity and creativity with our partners and developers,' Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said in a statement."

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