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LEAD 1-Microsoft suffers from the slow growth of the Azure distribution

January 30 (Reuters) – Microsoft released quarterly results on Wednesday, largely in line with Wall Street forecasts, despite the slowdown in the Azure cloud computing department.

The US group earnings per share were slightly above estimates, but Microsoft's share lost 2% of its session sales after Wall Street was closed. The title closed the current session at 3.34% progress.

Azure, the Group's leading division with Microsoft's choice to focus on the cloud market, where Amazon is the world's largest, saw its revenue growth in October-December rise to 76%, down 98% year-on-year and 76% in July-September.

"Our strong business results in the cloud reflect our partnership with leading companies in every industry, including retail, financial services, health care, breadth and dynamics," said group leader Saty Nadella. quoted in a statement.

However, the published results were clearly not enough to persuade financial analysts who are used to seeing the cloud market dynamics, allowing its members to regularly exceed expectations.

"It's not an exceptional quarter," said Shannon Cross. "It might play a bit" removing the title from the session.

At the end of December, Microsoft's total revenue increased by 12.3 percent to $ 32.47 billion (€ 28.3 billion), while financial analysts predicted an average of $ 32.51 billion. IBES-Refinitiv Data.

The Group's profit was $ 8.42 billion, or $ 1.08 per share, compared to a loss of $ 6.30 billion (82 cents / share) a year earlier.

Earnings per share, excluding extraordinary items, were $ 1.10, which is one cent higher than unanimity.

The revenue of the Professional Software Division increased by 13% to $ 10.1 billion, thanks, inter alia, to the double-digit number registered by Office 365 and LinkedIn. Wall Street was $ 10.09 billion.

The individual computing department, which includes the Windows operating system, the Xbox video game console, the surface tablets and the Bing search engine, among others, which is still the group's turnover, shows: an increase of 7% over the year to 13 billion compared to 13.07 billion expected by the market .

Vibhuti Sharma in Bangalore;
Marc Angrand for the French service

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