Software giant Microsoft (MSFT) reported quarterly earnings far beyond analysts’ expectations as its key cloud segment almost doubled its revenue. Cloud business brought in $6.68 billion during the second fiscal quarter. This was above both analyst expectations and the company’s guidance. Analysts had estimated that the cloud segment would bring in about $6.73 billion. Microsoft’s projected range for the cloud segment was $6.55 to $6.75 billion. Its major cloud product, Azure, grew by 93 % year-on-year. CEO Satya Nadella said in a statement that “Accelerating advancements in AI across our platforms and services will provide further opportunity to drive growth in the Microsoft Cloud”. Total second fiscal quarter revenue reached $26.07 billion and earnings of 83 cents per share. The consensus among Reuters analysts was 79 cents per share and $25.3 billion in revenue. Microsoft shares hit a fresh intraday all-time high of $64.54. Meanwhile, stocks rose by 23 percent in the past 12 months.
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