For this earnings season
25 Apr, 2018FORTUNE.COM
Microsoft may not be a favorite in the race to a becoming the country’s first trillion-dollar public company. But recently, after its younger tech peers whizzed past in valuation, Microsoft has become the second most valuable firm--albeit intermittently--for the first time since 2015.
On Tuesday, Microsoft was valued at $714 billion, about $3 billion above Alphabet and Amazon. Only Apple, valued at $838 billion, is higher.
Microsoft had briefly ascended to No. 2 on April 12 and then again on April 16. But it hasn’t been able to maintain its position for long.
On Tuesday, amid worries about higher U.S. Treasury yields and disappointing earnings by other companies that sent the S&P 500 down1.3%, Microsoft rose to No. 2 by virtue of its shares falling less--2.3%--than those of its rivals.
Investors are concerned that tech company earnings over the next couple of weeks will fail to meet lofty expectations. Tech firms were among the best performers of 2017, but they have hit a wall this year as investors rethink their enthusiasm.
Microsoft’s stock has gained momentum under CEO Satya Nadella, who has beefed up the company’s corporate-focused business. The uptick harkens back to a time when the software giant was the most valuable company. At the height of the dot-com boom in 2000, Microsoft was valued at $533.4 billion--about $777 billion in today’s dollars--followed by firms like Cisco Systems and General Electric. But when the bubble burst, Microsoft’s shares took a beating.
The distraction of an antitrust lawsuit by the Justice Department along with missed opportunities in search and mobile didn’t help.