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Microsoft makes $2.69bn in Q4

Not quite good enough for Wall Street

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Microsoft made a profit of $2.69bn for the fourth quarter ended 30 June 2004, on sales of $9.29bn - up 15 per cent on the same period last year. But shares fell three per cent in late trading, because profit per share was 28 cents, missing analysts' expectations of 29 cents.

Revenue from "Server and Tools" grew 20 per cent compared to the same period a year ago. Strong demand for Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Exchange helped drive the growth. MSN reported its first profitable year - it turned a loss of $567m for 2003 into a profit of $121m for 2004.

Microsoft's Information Worker division saw revene grow 23 per cent compared to the previous fourth quarter. The company credited "continued momentum" from volume licensing and OEM sales of Microsoft Office.

The figures included charges of $796m for settling an anti-trust lawsuit brought by Time Warner in defence of its Netscape browser.

Xbox revenues fell two per cent or $5m from the previous year's fourth quarter. It saw a $51m decline due to price reductions, offset by $32m increase related to higher Xbox sales and $14m from higher sales of software.

The company predicts sales of between $38.4bn and $38.8bn for 2005, it expects to make operating income of between $16.1bn and $16.5bn.

More at Microsoft. ®

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