Palo Capital Cut Stake in Microsoft (MSFT) by $369,784; Auxier Asset Management Upped Its Holding in Centurylink (CTL) as Share Price Rose

December 17, 2017 - By Darrin Black

William Leland Edwards decreased its stake in Microsoft Corp (MSFT) by 23.69% based on its latest 2017Q2 regulatory filing with the SEC. Palo Capital Inc sold 5,438 shares as the company’s stock rose 4.75% with the market. The hedge fund run by William Leland Edwards held 17,515 shares of the prepackaged software company at the end of 2017Q2, valued at $1.21M, down from 22,953 at the end of the previous reported quarter. Palo Capital Inc who had been investing in Microsoft Corp for a number of months, seems to be less bullish one the $670.01 billion market cap company. The stock increased 2.55% or $2.16 during the last trading session, reaching $86.85. About 53.94 million shares traded or 158.87% up from the average. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has risen 34.52% since December 17, 2016 and is uptrending. It has outperformed by 17.82% the S&P500.

Auxier Asset Management increased its stake in Centurylink Inc. (CTL) by 367.77% based on its latest 2017Q2 regulatory filing with the SEC. Auxier Asset Management bought 44,500 shares as the company’s stock rose 2.43% with the market. The institutional investor held 56,600 shares of the public utilities company at the end of 2017Q2, valued at $1.35 million, up from 12,100 at the end of the previous reported quarter. Auxier Asset Management who had been investing in Centurylink Inc. for a number of months, seems to be bullish on the $18.16B market cap company. The stock increased 3.16% or $0.52 during the last trading session, reaching $16.99. About 28.77M shares traded or 87.17% up from the average. CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL) has declined 7.62% since December 17, 2016 and is downtrending. It has underperformed by 24.32% the S&P500.

Since August 4, 2017, it had 0 insider buys, and 3 selling transactions for $513.86 million activity. COURTOIS JEAN PHILIPPE also sold $1.98M worth of Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) on Wednesday, August 30. Hood Amy also sold $4.00M worth of Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) on Tuesday, August 29.

Among 35 analysts covering Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), 29 have Buy rating, 2 Sell and 4 Hold. Therefore 83% are positive. Microsoft Corporation had 138 analyst reports since July 22, 2015 according to SRatingsIntel. The company was maintained on Tuesday, November 7 by Tigress Financial. The firm has “Buy” rating by BMO Capital Markets given on Thursday, July 13. Wunderlich maintained the shares of MSFT in report on Wednesday, July 22 with “Hold” rating. William Blair upgraded the shares of MSFT in report on Friday, October 21 to “Outperform” rating. Pacific Crest maintained the stock with “Overweight” rating in Tuesday, September 22 report. UBS maintained the stock with “Buy” rating in Friday, December 8 report. Vetr upgraded it to “Hold” rating and $47.66 target in Friday, August 21 report. The rating was maintained by Bernstein on Wednesday, November 15 with “Buy”. As per Monday, July 17, the company rating was maintained by Bank of America. The firm earned “Overweight” rating on Wednesday, January 6 by Barclays Capital.

Analysts await Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) to report earnings on January, 25. They expect $0.86 EPS, up 3.61% or $0.03 from last year’s $0.83 per share. MSFT’s profit will be $6.63B for 25.25 P/E if the $0.86 EPS becomes a reality. After $0.84 actual EPS reported by Microsoft Corporation for the previous quarter, Wall Street now forecasts 2.38% EPS growth.

Investors sentiment decreased to 0.82 in 2017 Q2. Its down 0.02, from 0.84 in 2017Q1. It worsened, as 39 investors sold MSFT shares while 982 reduced holdings. 132 funds opened positions while 703 raised stakes. 5.53 billion shares or 0.72% more from 5.49 billion shares in 2017Q1 were reported. Moreover, Zweig has 1.64% invested in Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) for 324,704 shares. Oppenheimer & owns 644,496 shares or 1.22% of their US portfolio. Icm Asset Mgmt Wa invested 17.97% of its portfolio in Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT). Mcrae Cap holds 168,000 shares or 4.7% of its portfolio. Comerica Secs has invested 0.27% in Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT). 105,258 were reported by Stonebridge Cap Mngmt. Susquehanna Ltd Liability Partnership stated it has 3.39 million shares. Janney Montgomery Scott Limited Company holds 1.18% or 1.38 million shares. Community Financial Bank Na holds 72,794 shares or 0.54% of its portfolio. Bridgewater Assocs Lp, Connecticut-based fund reported 22,144 shares. Pinebridge Invs LP owns 429,392 shares. Acr Alpine Capital holds 11.03% or 1.86M shares. Herndon Mgmt Ltd holds 0.01% in Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) or 895 shares. Citizens And Northern holds 17,514 shares or 0.95% of its portfolio. Cambridge Invest Research reported 464,957 shares stake.

Investors sentiment decreased to 1.08 in Q2 2017. Its down 0.22, from 1.3 in 2017Q1. It dived, as 67 investors sold CTL shares while 185 reduced holdings. 81 funds opened positions while 191 raised stakes. 444.41 million shares or 7.85% more from 412.05 million shares in 2017Q1 were reported. 8,824 were accumulated by Greenleaf Trust. Victory Capital Management has 324,881 shares for 0.02% of their portfolio. State Of Alaska Department Of Revenue invested 0.02% of its portfolio in CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL). North Star Asset Mgmt has 0.04% invested in CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL) for 15,372 shares. State Street invested in 30.27M shares. Alphamark Advsrs Lc holds 1.03% of its portfolio in CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL) for 100,727 shares. Massmutual Tru Fsb Adv has 0% invested in CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL) for 192 shares. Riverhead Capital Management Ltd Com holds 0.04% in CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL) or 35,072 shares. 1.57 million are held by Reaves W H Com. Manufacturers Life Insurance The has invested 0.06% in CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL). Nationwide Fund holds 326,975 shares or 0.03% of its portfolio. Waters Parkerson Communications Ltd Liability stated it has 11,650 shares or 0.03% of all its holdings. Moreover, Archford Strategies Ltd has 0% invested in CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL). Great West Life Assurance Can invested 0.06% in CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL). The California-based Cove Street Cap Limited Liability Corporation has invested 0.96% in CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL).

Auxier Asset Management, which manages about $647.08M and $489.52 million US Long portfolio, decreased its stake in Quest Diagnostics Inc. (NYSE:DGX) by 3,200 shares to 42,645 shares, valued at $4.74M in 2017Q2, according to the filing. It also reduced its holding in H & R Block Inc. (NYSE:HRB) by 13,600 shares in the quarter, leaving it with 124,252 shares, and cut its stake in Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT).

Among 20 analysts covering Centurylink Inc. (NYSE:CTL), 5 have Buy rating, 1 Sell and 14 Hold. Therefore 25% are positive. Centurylink Inc. had 55 analyst reports since July 31, 2015 according to SRatingsIntel. The stock of CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE:CTL) earned “Sector Perform” rating by RBC Capital Markets on Tuesday, September 22. The rating was downgraded by Wells Fargo on Tuesday, May 3 to “Market Perform”. On Wednesday, August 23 the stock rating was maintained by Morgan Stanley with “Overweight”. Morgan Stanley maintained the stock with “Overweight” rating in Wednesday, December 13 report. The rating was upgraded by Barclays Capital to “Equal-Weight” on Friday, December 15. The company was initiated on Wednesday, June 22 by Evercore. The company was maintained on Wednesday, October 18 by Cowen & Co. As per Friday, May 26, the company rating was maintained by RBC Capital Markets. The rating was maintained by Cowen & Co on Monday, August 14 with “Hold”. Suntrust Robinson initiated the shares of CTL in report on Tuesday, December 13 with “Hold” rating.

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