Microsoft Goes Through Ballmer Withdrawal and 2 More Heavily Traded Stocks to Follow

Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT): Closing price $34.15

He won’t be gone from Microsoft for many months, but Chief Executive Steve Ballmer’s retirement announcement leaves the biggest software company on the planet in a succession crisis during the worst slump so far for the personal-computer industry that the firm helped create.

A Sunday statement said that a search committee will consider internal and external candidates to replace Ballmer, who will exit within the next 12 months. Knowledgeable sources opine that Satya Nadella, Tony Bates, Qi Lu, and Terry Myerson are among the leading choices of Microsoft’s executives.

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Pandora Media Inc. (NYSE:P): Closing Price $18.91

Analyst Mark Mahaney at RBC Capital Markets says that even with a recent dip in Pandora’s shares, it remains the leader in online streaming music services, remarking that, “We like this stock. We liked it going into the print, so we were wrong in this 11 percent correction. But we like it here. This is still the leading play off of internet radio.”

On CNBC’s Fast Money, Mahaney put forward his rationale for why the stock would work going forward, explaining that, “The cost structure is starting to really work positively, i.e., they’re bringing down those music royalty costs. They’re making them smaller and smaller. They’re showing that they can monetize mobile usage. This is the poster child for mobile monetization, and they finally got it working.”

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3D Systems Corp. (NYSE:DDD): Closing price $51.90

Shares of 3D Systems closed up over 7 percent on the day after Citigroup initiating coverage of the stock with a Buy. Revenues brought by the 3D printing market could more than triple by 2017, while more manufacturers begin using the tech, said the Citi analyst Kenneth Wong in a note to investors earlier Monday. In the meantime, firms in the sector could see their margins soar as more profitable 3D printing materials comprise a higher percentage of their revenue, according to Wong.

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