Only time will tell who the new chief executive of Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) will be. Board member John Thompson wrote on Tuesday that the search committee expects to complete its work “in the early part of 2014,” and that until then, the markets will simply have to wait.
The news appears to have agitated investors who are eager to see what a post-Steve Ballmer Microsoft will look like. The stock has faced selling pressure ever since the announcement was made, with a temporary reprieve on Wednesday afternoon, after the U.S. Federal Reserve announced tapering and equities rallied to close the day near record highs.
News that Ford (NYSE:F) may not be doing so well has complicated the issue for Microsoft, as CEO Alan Mulally is a crowd favorite as a replacement for Ballmer. Analysts and pundits have argued that Mulally is exactly the type of executive that Microsoft needs to keep the company competitive with rivals like Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), but he could be called on by Ford’s board to stay and right the ship there.