Microsoft Target Price Increased at Wedbush on Cloud Strength

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‘The [Microsoft] Azure cloud growth story is hitting its next gear of growth,’ Wedbush said, lifting its share-price target on the software giant.

The target price on Microsoft  (MSFT) – Get Report shares on Friday was lifted by Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives, based largely on the strength of its Azure cloud service.

He raised the target to $350 from $325, affirming his rating at outperform.

“Our recent … September checks for Microsoft have shown incremental strength again, as the Azure cloud growth story is hitting its next gear of growth,” he said.

“We are seeing deal sizes continue to increase markedly, as enterprise-wide digital transformation shifts are accelerating with chief information officers all focused on readying their respective enterprises for a cloud-driven architecture.

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“We believe [Wall] Street’s view of moderating cloud growth on the other side of this 18-month work-from-home cycle is contrary to the deal activity MSFT is seeing in the field.”

In addition to Azure, “we also believe the Office 365 price increase for 2022 was a smart strategic poker move that could be another $5 billion-plus tailwind for Microsoft in 2022, giving more confidence that numbers could continue to move up higher looking ahead.”

Microsoft’s stock recently traded little changed at $296.66.

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Last month, the Redmond, Wash., company posted fiscal-fourth-quarter earnings and sales that topped expectations, eliciting positive reactions from analysts.

J.P. Morgan analyst Mark Murphy lifted his target price to $310 from $300 and kept his rating on the stock at overweight.

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