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The Best And Worst Technology Company Stocks In The First Half Of 2018

Twenty-eight of the 44 technology companies on our watch list recorded gains in the price of their publicly traded shares in the first half of 2018. Take a look at who were the winners and who were the losers.

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Microsoft

CEO: Satya Nadella

Dec. 29, 2017 Close: $85.54

June 29, 2018 Close: $98.61

Change: +15.28%

On June 4 Microsoft announced a deal to buy source code repository GitHub in a deal valued at $7.5 billion.

For its fiscal 2018 fourth quarter (ended June 30), Microsoft reported revenue of $30.06 billion, up 17 percent from $25.61 in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2017. Net income reached $8.87 billion, up 10 percent from $8.07 billion one year earlier.

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Cisco Systems

CEO: Chuck Robbins

Dec. 29, 2017 Close: $38.30

June 29, 2018 Close: $43.03

Change: +12.35%

On Feb. 2 Cisco completed its $1.9 billion acquisition of BroadSoft, extending Cisco's software-centric strategy and providing it with a bigger piece of the unified communications market. In May Cisco completed its acquisition of Accompany, a developer of AI-driven relationship intelligence software, for an undisclosed price.

For its fiscal 2018 fourth quarter (ended July 28), Cisco reported revenue of $12.84 billion, up nearly 6 percent from $12.13 billion in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2017. Net income for the quarter was $3.80 billion, up nearly 57 percent from $2.42 billion one year before.

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Red Hat

CEO: James Whitehurst

Dec. 29, 2017 Close: $120.10

June 29, 2018 Close: $134.40

Change: +11.91%

On June 21 open-source software provider Red Hat announced a program to repurchase up to $1 billion of the company's stock. Under an earlier, similar program, that ran from July 1, 2016, through June 20, 2018, the company bought back 8.2 million shares of its common stock for $751 million.

For its fiscal 2019 first quarter (ended May 31), Red Hat reported revenue of $813.5 million, up 20 percent from $676.8 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2018. Net income for the quarter was $113.2 million, up 50 percent from $75.3 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2018.

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CenturyLink

CEO: Jeff Storey

Dec. 29, 2017 Close: $16.68

June 29, 2018 Close: $18.64

Change: +11.75%

CenturyLink began the year working to integrate its operations with those of Level 3 Communications, the global network services company CenturyLink acquired Nov. 1 for about $34 billion in cash and stock.

On March 6 CenturyLink announced that longtime CEO Glen Post would retire with president and chief operating officer Jeff Storey taking over as CEO, as of the date of CenturyLink's annual shareholder meeting in May. The plan had been for Storey, Level 3 Communication's CEO for four years, to take over as CenturyLink CEO as of Jan. 1, 2019.

For the first six months of 2018 (ended June 30), CenturyLink reported operating revenue of $11.85 billion, up 43 percent from $8.30 billion in the first half of 2017. Net income for the six-month period was $407 million, up 126 percent from $180 million in the first half of 2017.

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Apple

CEO: Tim Cook

Dec. 29, 2017 Close: $169.23

June 29, 2018 Close: $185.11

Change: +9.38%

Apple's stock price continued to increase after the June 29 closing price on which this analysis is based. On Aug. 2 Apple became the world's first company to achieve a $1 trillion market capitalization after the company's stock price reached an all-time high of $206.46.

For its fiscal 2018 third quarter (ended June 30), Apple reported revenue of $53.27 billion, up more than 17 percent from $45.41 billion in the third quarter of fiscal 2017. Net income for the quarter was $11.52 billion, up 32 percent from $8.72 billion one year earlier.

 
 
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