(Reuters) – Investors have pushed shares of Microsoft Corp up almost 30 percent since the start of the year, betting that the pandemic-induced shift to more remote computing will boost its business.
FILE PHOTO: The Microsoft store is pictured in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., June 26, 2020. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
Those investors will find out if they were right on Wednesday, when the company reports its results for the fiscal fourth quarter.
Wall Street, however, is braced for Microsoft to report that Azure, its flagship cloud computing business, has slipped below 50% revenue growth for the first time ever.
Analysts also expect some declines, such as for Microsoft’s on-premises server purchases and sales of consumer devices. They also expect Microsoft to take an earnings-per-share hit of about 5 cents because of a decision last month to shutter its retail operations permanently.
But they expect continued