Microsoft extends decline on cautious outlook

Seattle, July 20: Shares in Microsoft Corp. closed down 3 per cent on Friday after the world's biggest software maker pared back its outlook for the year despite a steady sales gain in the latest quarter.

Seattle, July 20: Shares in Microsoft Corp. closed down 3 per cent on Friday after the world's biggest software maker pared back its outlook for the year despite a steady sales gain in the latest quarter.

The decline marked a second consecutive lower weekly close, a drop that has taken Microsoft down by nearly 10 per cent from its high last week of $54.93.

"There is disappointment that the numbers were guided down," said Brendan Barnicle, analyst at Pacific Crest Securities.

Microsoft shares closed at $49.56, down $1.55, or just over 3 per cent on Friday, tracking a 2.8 per cent decline in the Nasdaq Composite index.

For its fiscal year to next June, Microsoft trimmed sales forecasts to between $31.4 billion and $32.0 billion, which would represent an increase of 11 to 13 per cent from $28.4 billion in the year just ended.

Bureau Report

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