Chief correspondent, Seattle
Bill's Feed
Jul 21, 2011

Microsoft profit set to rise but PC worries dominate

SEATTLE, July 21 (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp is
expected to post a 9 percent increase in fiscal fourth-quarter
profit on Thursday, helped by solid sales of its Windows and
Office mainstays, but investors may be distracted by evidence of
flickering computer sales, which are key to its success.

The world’s largest software maker is set to follow Google
Inc , Apple Inc , and IBM in reporting
surprisingly good results as technology spending holds up
relatively well in an uncertain economy.

Jul 19, 2011

Microsoft seals record year, stock still stuck

SEATTLE, July 18 (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is set
to post a 9 percent jump in fiscal fourth-quarter profit on
Thursday, putting the cap on its best financial year ever, but
investors are fidgety over flagging computer sales and a
gnawing feeling that the tech pioneer will never recapture old
growth rates.

The shares of the world’s largest software company have
risen 10 percent over the past month — outpacing the
tech-heavy Nasdaq — but still are perched in the mid-$20
range, a level they have circled since 1998, adjusted for
splits.

Jul 12, 2011
via MediaFile

Ballmer’s fuzzy PC math

Photo

Nobody doubts CEO Steve Ballmer’s passion and commitment to Microsoft’s cause. But occasionally his enthusiasm gets the better of him, especially when it comes to numbers.

Yesterday, kicking off Microsoft’s huge partner conference in Los Angeles, Ballmer made a stronger-than-usual assertion of Windows dominance overĀ  competing operating systems, chiefly from the up-and-coming Apple.
“We’re selling a lot of Windows,” Ballmer trumpeted, on the day Microsoft announced it had sold more than 400 million Windows 7 licenses since launch in October 2009.

Jun 28, 2011

Microsoft rolls out Office in the cloud

SEATTLE, June 28 (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) made
its biggest move into the mobile, Internet-accessible world of
“cloud” computing on Tuesday, taking the wraps off a revamped
online version of its hugely profitable Office software suite.

The world’s largest software company is heaving its
two-decade old set of applications — including Outlook email,
Excel spreadsheets and SharePoint collaboration tools — into
an online format so that customers can use them on a variety of
devices from wherever they can get an Internet connection.

Jun 28, 2011

Microsoft puts Office in the “cloud,” confronts Google

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp is making its biggest move into the mobile, Internet-accessible world of ‘cloud’ computing this week, as it takes the wraps off a revamped online version of its hugely profitable Office software suite.

The world’s largest software company is heaving its two-decade old set of applications — including Outlook email, Excel spreadsheets and SharePoint collaboration tools — into an online format so that customers can use them on a variety of devices from wherever they can get an Internet connection.

Jun 22, 2011

Overachiever Oracle faces high growth hurdles

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Oracle Corp has a habit of beating Wall Street expectations, but some investors fear billionaire Larry Ellison’s software and server juggernaut will find it hard to keep up its own pace when it reports earnings and sets new forecasts on Thursday.

The world’s No. 1 database software maker is facing wobbly economies across the world, especially in Europe, and might already have reaped the greatest gains from the purchase of Sun Microsystems 18 months ago.

Jun 18, 2011

Boeing refuses to rush decision on 737 upgrades

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) says it feels no pressure to rush a decision on whether to re-engine or redesign its best-selling 737 narrow-body, despite impressive orders for an upgraded version of the competing plane — the Airbus A320neo.

Customers will wait for the best, most-fuel efficient plane Boeing can make, and the company cannot risk promising a plane it cannot deliver, said Nicole Piasecki, vice president of business development and strategic information for Boeing Commercial Airplanes told reporters earlier this month.

Jun 14, 2011

Boeing, U.S. labor board lock horns over 787 plant

SEATTLE, June 14 (Reuters) – Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is bracing
for what could be a years-long battle over its decision to put
a production line for the 787 Dreamliner in South Carolina and
not in Washington state, where its unionized work force has a
history of labor strikes.

The matter has become the fulcrum of a larger conflict
between supporters of labor union rights and those who believe
U.S. companies should have the freedom to build factories where
they want.

May 26, 2011

Microsoft board backs Ballmer over Einhorn

SEATTLE (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp’s board stood behind Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer on Thursday, defending its longtime leader after influential hedge fund manager David Einhorn touched off a debate by calling for his dismissal.

The fund manager, who made his name warning about Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc’s financial health before the investment bank’s collapse, accused Ballmer on Wednesday evening of being stuck in the past, launching the sharpest attack yet by a high-profile investor against the company’s leadership.

May 26, 2011

Hedge fund star calls for Microsoft CEO to go

NEW YORK/SEATTLE (Reuters) – Influential hedge fund manager David Einhorn has called for Microsoft Corp Chief Executive Steve Ballmer to step down, saying the world’s largest software company’s leader is stuck in the past.

“His continued presence is the biggest overhang on Microsoft’s stock,” Einhorn said in reference to Ballmer.

    • About Bill

      "Bill Rigby is Reuters' chief correspondent in Seattle, reporting on Microsoft and Boeing and overseeing coverage of general news in Washington state, Oregon and Alaska. He has been a Reuters journalist since 1998, reporting on banks, insurers, stock markets, defense companies and airlines from Reuters bureaux in London, New York and Seattle."
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