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Microsoft's earnings beat expectations as cloud business booms

Daniel Howley
Technology Editor

Microsoft (MSFT) announced its Q4 2018 earnings on Thursday and it beat analysts’ projections. This came as all major business segments saw year-over-year growth.

The Windows maker posted earnings of $1.14 per share on $30.1 billion of revenue. Analysts predicted earnings of $1.08 per share on $29.22 billion in revenue. Revenue came in at $23.3 billion in the same quarter a year ago.

Microsoft’s Intelligent Cloud, which CEO Satya Nadella has positioned as the cornerstone of the company’s future, pulled in $9.6 billion. That’s a 23% increase from Q4 2017, during which the segment pulled in $7.4 billion, and yet another clear sign that Microsoft’s pivot to the cloud is proving ever more prescient.

The tech giant’s Productivity and Business Processes segment, which includes Microsoft Office, saw $9.7 billion of revenue, a 13% year-over-year increase. Interestingly, Microsoft’s More Personal Computing business was up 17% year-over-year, raking in $10.8 billion, and showing that Microsoft still relies on the segment for its overall revenue. More Personal Computing is made up of the company’s Windows, gaming and device offerings.

That’s likely to change, though, as the PC market stagnates and the company’s cloud business continues its growth pattern. Microsoft’s two biggest competitors in the space include Amazon’s (AMZN) Amazon Web Services and Google’s (GOOG, GOOGL) Google Cloud Platform. Amazon still has the lead on Microsoft in terms of size and revenue, while Google comes in third.

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Email Daniel Howley at dhowley@oath.com; follow him on Twitter at @DanielHowleyFollow Yahoo Finance on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and LinkedIn