What's Wrong With Microsoft Today?

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Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over daily movements, we do like to keep an eye on market changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

The Dow Jones index is having a pretty good day today, moving up 0.2% to possibly end a four-day losing streak. But Dow member Microsoft didn't get the memo.

Microsoft is the Dow's worst performer today. Its shares are drifting 1.2% lower, and Microsoft's own five-day history is looking like an uninterrupted losing streak that spans more than 5%.

Steve Mollenkopf got Qualcomm's CEO chair just as Microsoft came a-knocking. Image source: Qualcomm..

Today, Redmond's investors bemoan the loss of another potential superstar CEO candidate. Chip maker Qualcomm  heard the rumors that its COO Steve Mollenkopf might just be perfect for Microsoft's top office when current CEO Steve Ballmer moves out -- so Qualcomm anointed Mollenkopf as its soon-to-be CEO instead.

This move came right out of left field, as longtime Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs seemed both secure and happy in his current role. Jacobs isn't leaving the company his father founded, but will remain as executive chairman to guide Qualcomm's overall strategy. Mollenkopf steps up in March to manage Qualcomm's operations and execution with more authority than his old COO position could wield.

Mollenkopf is an engineer by training and an astute operations leader, having guided Qualcomm's chip-building business though massive acquisitions and opportunistic strategy changes. He could have been the iconoclastic change driver that Microsoft so desperately needs, battling against a Microsoft boardroom utterly dominated by the old guard.

But that option is clearly off the table now. A few Microsoft investors who were hoping for Mollenkopf to ride in and save the company are now looking for another hero -- or losing hope entirely and not holding on to their Microsoft shares at all.

Two more words Bill Gates doesn't want you to hear
"Mollenkopf's out!" can't be music to Bill Gates' ears but there are two other little words that have terrified the Microsoft founder for years. Interested in the next tech revolution? Then you'll need to learn about the radical technology shift some say forced the mighty Bill Gates into a premature retirement. Meanwhile, early in-the-know investors are already getting filthy rich off of it... by quietly investing in the three companies that control its fortune-making future. You've likely heard of one of them, but you've probably never heard of the other two... to find out what they are, click here to watch this shocking video presentation!

The article What's Wrong With Microsoft Today? originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of Microsoft and Qualcomm. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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