U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou, who is under house arrest in Canada and facing extradition to America, is not a bargaining chip in the trade...Technologyread more
Boris Johnson will be meeting President Donald Trump to discuss a potential post-Brexit trade deal just as he tries to court EU leaders for a new withdrawal agreement.World Politicsread more
Arturo Estrella has a message for recession naysayers: It could hit sooner than you think.Marketsread more
Accountants in Hong Kong took to the streets on Friday to call for the government to accept five demands of the people, including the complete withdrawal of a now-suspended...China Politicsread more
Recent trade friction between the two Asian powerhouses has morphed into a dispute with political implications that go far beyond the region.Asia Politicsread more
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell faces the tough challenge of presenting a unified voice on Fed policy from the most divided Fed in years.Market Insiderread more
Local governments commonly share single service providers, making many vulnerable at once. On top of this, ransomware has often been used to mask more targeted, malicious...Technologyread more
The unlikely alliance would in theory enjoy a relatively comfortable majority in the parliament's lower house but would rely on a handful of sympathetic but unaligned...Europe Politicsread more
Bank Indonesia on Thursday cut its key policy rate by 25 basis points to 5.5% to support growth amid an increasingly fragile global economy.Central Banksread more
Meanwhile, investors look ahead to Fed Chair Jerome Powell's speech at a yearly central banking symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.Asia Marketsread more
The chip, called the Ascend 910, was first unveiled in October last year and is aimed at data centers.Technologyread more
Microsoft shares jumped as much as 5.1% on Thursday, pushing the company past $1 trillion in market value on a better-than-expected earnings report.
The stock needed to hit $130.51 to reach the trillion-dollar mark for the first time. It traded as high as $131.37, though it bounced around throughout the day before closing at $129.15 for a market cap of about $990 billion.
After regular trading on Wednesday, Microsoft reported fiscal third-quarter earnings of $1.14 per share, excluding certain items, topping the $1.00 estimate of analysts surveyed by Refinitiv. Revenue climbed 14% to $30.6 billion, exceeding the average estimate of $29.84 billion.
Microsoft and Facebook kicked off tech earnings season, with both companies surpassing expectations. Facebook shares rose more than 6% on Thursday. Amazon reports after the bell, followed by Alphabet and Apple early next week. Expectations are high for the tech sector, after the Nasdaq climbed to an intraday record Wednesday.
Sales growth at Microsoft is being driven by the transition to the public cloud as more large businesses offload their servers and data storage to Azure infrastructure. Gross margin, or the percentage of revenue left after accounting for the costs of goods sold, was 66.7%, up from 65.4% a year earlier. Net income rose 19% to $8.8 billion.
Azure's revenue surged 73%. Microsoft's commercial cloud business, which includes Azure, grew 41% in the quarter to $9.6 billion. While Azure is still much smaller than rival Amazon Web Service, Stifel analysts say it's growing faster than AWS was at a similar size. And analysts at Mizuho Securities said Azure's growth was well above their forecast for 68% expansion.
"We continue to be very bullish on Azure's positioning," the Mizuho analysts wrote in a note after the earnings report. The firm has a buy rating on the stock.
Microsoft said on the earnings call that revenue in the fiscal fourth quarter will be $32.2 billion to $32.9 billion. Analysts expected $32.6 billion, according to Refinitiv.
In addition to growth in cloud infrastructure, Microsoft is also benefiting from the move to cloud applications, pushing users of its traditional productivity products like Word and Excel to the cloud-based Office 365 suite. Commercial sales of Office 365 increased 30%. And LinkedIn, the professional networking site that Microsoft acquired for more than $26 billion in 2016, continues to grow much faster than the overall business. LinkedIn's revenue climbed 27% in the quarter.