Microsoft shares fell more than 11% on Friday, their biggest plunge in more than four years, a day after the software company posted dismal quarterly results due to weak demand for its latest Windows system and poor sales of its Surface tablet.
The stock’s selloff, from five-year highs, is the biggest in percentage terms since January 2009, when the world’s largest software company cut 5,000 jobs during the recession. At one point in the day, losses exceeded 12%, making it the biggest fall since the internet stock bubble burst in 2000.
About $34 billion was wiped off Microsoft’s market value on Friday, exceeding the size of rival Yahoo.
Microsoft’s earnings were wrecked by a $900 million writedown on the value of unsold Surface tablets after it cut prices in a bid to excite buyers.
The poor results shocked Wall Street, which had believed the company’s strength with business customers would help it ride out a downturn in consumer PC sales. The results provoked fresh skepticism of chief executive Steve Ballmer’s new plan to reshape the company around devices and services, unveiled last week.