Trending tickers: Alphabet, Intel, Microsoft, Amazon and Anglo American

Alphabet FILE PHOTO: People walk next to a Google logo during a trade fair in Hannover Messe, in Hanover, Germany, April 22, 2024.  REUTERS/Annegret Hilse/File Photo
Google parent Alphabet has announced its first-ever dividend. (REUTERS / Reuters)

Alphabet’s first-quarter revenue jumped 15% as Google’s parent company announced its first-ever dividend of 20 cents a share alongside a $70bn (£56bn) stock buyback.

Google posted $80.5bn in revenue for the first quarter of 2024 and reported $1.89 in earnings per share, up from $1.17 – beating analysts’ expectations on both counts.

The company also announced its first dividend, of $0.20 per share, and said the payout would become quarterly.

“Our leadership in AI [artificial intelligence] research and infrastructure, and our global product footprint, position us well for the next wave of AI innovation,” CEO Sundar Pichai said in the earnings release.

Shares in Alphabet were up roughly 15% in premarket trading. The jump pushed Alphabet’s market cap past $2tn.

Intel reported first-quarter earnings on Thursday that beat Wall Street expectations for earnings per share but the company's Q2 outlook fell short of Wall Street's estimates, sending the stock sliding.

In the first quarter, Intel reported a net loss of $400m, or 9 cents per share, versus a net loss of $2.8bn, or 66 cents per share, last year.

Revenue was $12.7bn versus $11.7bn a year ago, a 9% year-over-year increase.

Read more: FTSE 100 LIVE: European stocks rise as traders digest US tech earnings and Bank of Japan decision

Intel said it anticipates Q2 revenue of between $12.5bn and $13.5bnn. Analysts were anticipating $13.63bn for the coming quarter. “We are making steady progress against our priorities and delivered a solid quarter,” said CEO Pat Gelsinger.

Microsoft’s heavy bet on AI appears to be paying off as the world’s largest public company reported $61.86bn revenue for the last quarter.

Total revenue increased 17% to $61.86bn during the first three months of 2024, the third quarter of its financial year, surpassing analyst expectations of some $60.88bn. Earnings per share increased 20% to $2.94, ahead of the expected $2.83.

"Microsoft’s AI-powered earnings demonstrate that doubling down on innovation is paying off," Jeremy Goldman, senior director of briefings at Emarketer, told Reuters, pointing to the company's early moves in generative AI, such as its large investment in ChatGPT maker OpenAI.

Sales in Microsoft’s cloud division, its biggest revenue driver that includes its Azure computing platform, climbed 21% during the quarter to $26.7bn, compared with analysts’ forecasts for $26.2bn and above company guidance.

Amazon are higher in premarket trading following a pair of strong quarters from mega-cap peers Microsoft and Alphabet.

Amazon is scheduled to report its first-quarter financial results after the US market close on April 30. The company is expected to report earnings of 83 cents per share on revenue of $142.495bn, according to estimates from Benzinga Pro.

Investors should keep an eye out for any fluctuations to the share price at the open following reports that the Federal Trade Commission asked a judge to force Amazon to reveal what it tells company leaders about using the encrypted messaging app Signal to discuss sensitive topics and about preserving documents related to antitrust matters, according to a new court filing.

Read more: UK consumer confidence rises amid personal finance optimism

In September, the FTC filed a suit against Amazon, arguing that the company has illegally maintained a monopoly and artificially raised prices for consumers.

British mining giant Anglo American has rejected a £31.1bn takeover offer by Australian rival BHP (BHP.L)

The FTSE 100 miner said the bid was “opportunistic” and “significantly undervalues Anglo American and its future prospects”.

The unsolicited approach from BHP would include a structure which “is highly unattractive” for Anglo’s shareholders, “given the uncertainty and complexity inherent in the proposal, and significant execution risks”, the board said.

The bid would have seen BHP pay £25.08 for every Anglo American share, which would include stock in Anglo subsidiaries Anglo Platinum and Kumba Iron Ore.

It would be conditional on Anglo demerging its entire shareholdings in the two businesses to its shareholders.

The board said that it had unanimously rejected the proposal.

Anglo’s shares surged by 16.1% on Thursday after news of the bid emerged, valuing the miner at £31.4bn and above the offer price from BHP.

Watch: Alphabet's dividend an 'olive branch for investors': Analyst

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