Diamonds and Dogs
Microsoft (MSFT) back to a trillion dollars. Mr. Softie is up 2% to new all-time highs following a 11% dividend hike and approval of a $40 billion stock repurchase program. Microsoft bought back $19.5 billion, $10.7 billion, and $11.8 billion in stock in fiscal 2019, fiscal 2018, and fiscal 2017, respectively. The dividend hike with boost the company's yield and market cap above Apples. Apple stock still has the best year to date performance up over 41% verse Microsoft's 38%. Not bad for a market up 22% year to date.
Steel stocks continue to struggle. U.S. Steel Corp (X) is down 13% not far from a 52-week low after the company lowered guidance. US Steels expects to report a wider loss than analysts were expecting, the third American steelmaker in three days to warn on their outlook. The Pittsburgh-based company cited weakening markets for flat-rolled steel and tubular products for the energy industry. It expects an adjusted loss of 35 cents a share this quarter, according to a statement Wednesday, compared with the average analyst estimate for a 6-cent loss. The outlook comes after Nucor Corp., the largest U.S. producer of the metal, and Steel Dynamics Inc. this week gave guidance short of estimates. US steel is down 60% in the last year.