Hedge fund calls for Microsoft leader Steve Ballmer to leave

INFLUENTIAL hedge fund manager David Einhorn has called for Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer to step down, saying the world’s largest software company’s leader is stuck in the past.

The comments by outspoken Einhorn, who made his name warning about Lehman Brothers’ financial health before the investment bank’s collapse, are the most pointed yet from a high-profile investor against Microsoft’s leadership.

Einhorn said: “His continued presence is the biggest overhang on Microsoft’s stock.”

Shares in the firm have dropped six per cent in the last two weeks after it agreed to pay $8.5bn (£5.2bn) for internet phone service Skype.

A Microsoft spokesman declined to comment on Einhorn’s remarks.