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July 19, 2013

Weak PC Market Hurts Microsoft’s Bottom Line

A “challenging consumer PC market” for the first time has hit Microsoft where it hurts — in the pocketbook.

The software giant, which fell short of Wall Street forecasts, said an ongoing strength in enterprise was offset by the ever-weakening PC market.

In its fiscal fourth quarter, Microsoft recorded a net income of $4.97 billion (59 cents per share) compared to a loss of $492 million, or six cents a share in the same quarter last year.

Revenue grew by 10 percent to $19.9 billion from $18.06 billion in 2012, but was still almost one billion dollars short of the average analyst estimate of $20.73 billion, according to Thomson Reuters.

Amy Hood

Amy Hood

“While our fourth quarter results were impacted by the decline in the PC market, we continue to see strong demand for our enterprise and cloud offerings, resulting in a record unearned revenue balance this quarter,” said Amy Hood, Microsoft’s chief financial officer in a press release.

“We also saw increasing consumer demand for services like Office 365,, Skype, and Xbox LIVE. While we have work ahead of us, we are making the focused investments needed to deliver on long-term growth opportunities like cloud services.”

For Microsoft’s fiscal year 2013, the company’s revenue sits at $77.85 billion, operating income came in at $26.76 billion and diluted earnings per share are $2.58 per share. The year’s results were impacted by a $900 million charge, or a $0.07 per share related to “Surface RT inventory adjustments.” The results also reflect $540 million of previously deferred revenue related to the Windows Upgrade Offer and paying a $733-million European Commission fine.

“We are working hard to deliver compelling new devices and high value experiences from Microsoft and our partners in the coming months, including new Windows 8.1 tablets and PCs,” said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

“Our new products and the strategic realignment we announced last week position us well for long-term success, as we focus our energy and resources on creating a family of devices and services for individuals and businesses that empower people around the globe at home, at work and on the go, for the activities they value the most.”