There’s Apple… and there’s Microsoft
It’s a tale of two companies in the technology world on Thursday. There’s Apple, whose quarterly profit beat expectations on strong iPod and Mac computer sales. And then there’s Microsoft, whose dismal earnings sent shockwaves through financial markets.
There should be plenty of interesting questions for CEO Steve Ballmer on the company’s conference call this morning — some of which he likely wouldn’t answer if asked.
Why didn’t Microsoft give investors a warning if the results were going to look so lousy? Why release the results Thursday morning rather than when it was supposed to, later this afternoon? What’s going on with Yahoo? Will 5,000 jobs cuts — the biggest ever by Microsoft — be sufficient? And, seriously, why is Apple doing such so much better?
Already, there is no shortage of opinions on what’s happening over at Microsoft, and more will tumble out after the conference call. For now, check out this Instant View by Reuters, which gives a pretty good idea of what Wall Street is thinking.
Or just read this comment by Frank Lesh, a futures analyst and broker at FuturePath Trading LLC in Chicago: “This is not good news for Microsoft, there’s nothing here to inspire buying, not even buying on weakness at this point.”
Keep an eye on:
- Sony Corp warned it would post a record $2.9 billion annual operating loss due to sliding demand and a stronger yen, and unveiled fresh restructuring steps to revive its ailing electronics operations (Reuters)
- “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” a drama in which Brad Pitt plays a man who ages backward, led the field of Oscar contenders with 13 nominations (Reuters)
- Meredith posted a lower quarterly profit on Thursday, and forecast a bleak advertising market for the rest of the year in its magazine publishing and broadcasting businesses (Reuters)