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When investors saw the headlines about Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) agreeing to drop $26 billion to buy business social networker LinkedIn Corp. (NYSE: LNKD), I can almost guarantee the universal reaction was a head-shaking groan followed by some form of the statement "Here we go again..."
That kind of exasperation is understandable.
After all, anyone who's watched Microsoft as long as I have will tell you (if they're feeling charitable) that the company has a mixed track record when it comes to deal-making. Just last month, in fact, Microsoft finally dumped its smartphones, having flushed $10 billion in 2014 to buy, attempt to fix, and run onetime market leader Nokia's phone business.
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