MSN MoneyCentral 1999 Stock Picks More Than Double S&P Performance; Provide Consumers With Great Tools, Resources

REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 11, 2000 — Microsoft Corp. today announced outstanding year-end results for stocks that were featured on the award-winning MSN TM MoneyCentral TM online personal finance service, at . In 1999, more than 700 stocks featured in interviews and profiles on MoneyCentral went up 48.7 percent – two and a half times that of the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (S & P) gain and four times the performance that MoneyCentral recorded in 1998. Exclusive portfolios maintained on MoneyCentral by experts fared even better, with returns ranging up to a mind-boggling 1,076 percent for the year for an aggressive, momentum-based portfolio known as the
“Month-Trader SuperModel.”
This success rate is further proof that MoneyCentral is a trustworthy online personal finance resource for both novices and well-seasoned investors.

The Investor Department within MoneyCentral offers consumers free information and the insight and tools needed to create and manage a portfolio to track and research investments. Features – such as Investing in the ’00s and the 50 Best Stocks in the World for the Long Term – highlight tactics for weighing investment ideas and opportunities. Investing experts at MoneyCentral offer consumers daily assessments of the current market, their latest trading moves and strategic plans for action:

  • Jim
    Jubak, senior markets editor for MSN MoneyCentral and author of
    “The Worth Guide to Electronic Investing”
    “In the Image of the Brain: Breaking the Barrier Between the Human Mind and Intelligent Machines.”
    Stocks picked by Jubak in 1999 rose 102 percent.

  • Jon
    Markman, managing editor of MSN MoneyCentral Investor and author of
    “Online Investing: How to Find the Right Stocks at the Right Time.”
    Markman’s three SuperModel portfolios showed an average return in 1999 of 423 percent.

  • Mary Rowland, co-host of the MoneyCentral Live! radio show and author of
    “The New Commonsense Guide to Mutual Funds.”
    Stocks picked by Rowland in 1999 increased by 150 percent.

  • The Strategy Lab, composed of money managers Terry Bedford, Janet Brown, Eric Dublin, Anthony Kolton, Bert Dohmen and Robert Sheard. Stocks chosen by the Strategy Lab increased by an average of 75 percent.

Getting in Financial Shape in 2000

MoneyCentral provides an
“exercise routine”
to help consumers get their finances into shape, easing consumers into financial health with the articles, tools and resources needed for them to get wired, trim back and build up. The Web site, at , offers seven steps for consumers to follow to take control of their personal finances:

  • Get wired

  • Prepare for the unexpected

  • Establish savings goals

  • Review your will and estate plan

  • Get a better handle on your credit

  • Create and track your investments

  • Plan your tax strategy

MoneyCentral provides tools and resources for consumers to welcome technology by taking advantage of the convenience of online bill payment. Consumers can also learn how to prepare for unplanned events such as unexpected job loss or an accident by being prepared with the right insurance. Setting goals and reviewing them regularly is essential for taking control of personal finances. The Y2K financial checkup offers information for establishing an investment plan and reviewing what is already set aside, as well as finding the right adviser if one is needed. Once a routine is established, it will become easier for consumers to maintain better credit by evaluating debt and better managing their funds, and learning how to manage and keep track of investments. Consumers should become familiar with how much they expect to earn, what their expenses are, and what they should anticipate paying in taxes.

“With our winning stock picks, MSN MoneyCentral ended 1999 with a bang,”
said Chris Jolley, product manager of MSN MoneyCentral at Microsoft.
“By tapping into seasoned financial experts, we are able to bring smart, trustworthy and valuable financial information to consumers every day, making MSN MoneyCentral the most useful online personal finance resource for consumers in the new millennium.”

About MSN MoneyCentral

MSN MoneyCentral, located at , is a complete online personal finance resource delivering leading financial tools and information in nine key areas: Investor, News Desk, Saving & Spending, Banking & Bills, Family & College, Retirement & Wills, Taxes, Insurance and Real Estate. The award-winning site offers consumers the ability to complete a wide range of everyday financial tasks, such as paying bills, tracking investments and staying informed on the latest financial news, in one convenient place online – any time, anywhere. MSN MoneyCentral helps enable people at all levels of experience to take control of and feel comfortable with their finances, helping them make smart financial decisions.

About MSN and Microsoft

MSN is the network of Internet services from Microsoft that helps people better organize the Web around what’s important to them. The network of MSN services, located on the Web at TM ( ), helps people easily stay in touch with friends and colleagues make smart and secure purchasing decisions, and get more done. MSN offers award-winning e-mail functionality; personal communications services; wireless services information; customizable access to news; popular sites for personal finance, travel, automotive services, shopping and more; an online community; a Web search engine and directories; and top-rated Internet access.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software – any time, any place and on any device.

This document is provided for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS DOCUMENT.

Microsoft, MSN, MoneyCentral and are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries/regions.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web site at on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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