Microsoft Tops Cloud Computing Expectations; Alphabet Ad Revenue Slips

The google advert in Time Square during a deluge from Winter Storm Quinn in Time Square, Manhattan.

Tim Clayton/Corbis / Getty Images

Microsoft (MSFT) and Alphabet Inc. (GOOG, GOOGL) shares rose in after-market trading after Microsoft beat expectations for growth of its cloud segment and Alphabet authorized a share buyback while reporting a decline in ad revenue.

Key Takeaways

  • Microsoft announced earnings per share of $2.45 versus $2.24 forecast.
  • Alphabet had momentum in cloud, but Youtube ad revenues fell again.
  • No further job cuts announced but Alphabet takes a $2 billion hit on layoffs.

Shares of Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft jumped 5% after the company posted earnings per share of $2.45, beating analysts' expectations for $2.24. Its performance was driven by strong cloud computing revenue, which came in at $22.1 billion versus estimates of $21.9 billion.

Alphabet, the parent company of Google, beat estimates for revenue, which came in at $69.8 billion and profit, which totaled $15.1 billion. Still, advertising revenue fell 5% to $40.4 billion and it said sales from Youtube ads slipped to $6.69 billion from $6.86 billion in the same period a year ago. Its shares rose 3.7% after the board approved a $70 billion stock buyback program.

Analysts’ concerns about further tech sector layoffs weren't evident at Microsoft or Alphabet. Yet Alphabet did say it took $2 billion in expenses in the first quarter for employee severance and related charges after slashing 12,000 jobs in January. The company added that it had incurred charges of $564 million for office space reductions and said that it may “further evaluate” office space requirements in the future. 

Microsoft’s earnings release was the first since the artificial intelligence hype that followed the release of its Chat-GPT-powered version of the Bing search engine. The company said that its search and news advertising revenue rose 10% higher from the last quarter. That performance was lost in the More Personal Computing segment results, where revenue of $13.26 billion declined from last year’s $14.58 billion. 

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  1. Alphabet. "Q1 Earnings Transcript".

  2. Microsoft. "Q3 2023 Earnings Release".

  3. CNBC. "Alphabet Authorizes $70 billion Buyback".

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