Microsoft announces record earnings

Microsoft announced a net income of $741 million for the quarter ending December 31, a 27% increase over the same quarter last year. Said Mike Brown, Microsoft's Chief Financial Officer, "The company performed solidly in all of our businesses, including operating systems, desktop applications, enterprise software, tools, hardware and content. We are pleased with the current financial results and growth prospects for the next two quarters, particularly with the outlook for sales of Office 97 \[pardon the pun, apparently. -Paul\]. However, I do anticipate slower earnings growth in fiscal 1998 (beginning July 1997) due to lower revenue increases in our maturing businesses and margin pressure from continuing aggressive spending on research and development and new business ventures." The cautionary note is interesting since Microsoft is stating that many of the markets they dominate are "saturated" and that the days of double-digit growth are likely over. As PC Week notes, "not many tears are likely to be shed for Microsoft.

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