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Stock Upgrades, Downgrades From TheStreet.com Ratings: March 18

Shares have slipped 7.8% in the past year. With a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.49, the stock is now selling for less than others in its industry. However, its valuation does not justify a buy rating at this time. Autodesk had been rated buy since TheStreet.com Ratings initiated coverage on March 13, 2006.

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK - Get Report), a pharmaceutical company, has been downgraded to hold. Strengths such as its growth in earnings per share and revenue are balanced by a disappointing stock-price performance. For the third quarter, EPS increased 6.5% year over year to 99 cents, and revenue rose 6% to $11.65 billion. For 2008, the market expects an improvement in full-year EPS to $3.79 from $3.71 in 2007. The company's gross profit margin is very high at 78%, and its net profit margin of 24% compares favorably with the industry average. Return on equity has decreased to 54% from 55% a year ago but still exceeds the industry average. Shares have lost 25% in the past year, netting a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.49. Although this P/E makes the stock cheaper than others in its industry, we do not feel it is a good time to buy. GlaxoSmithKline had been rated buy since TheStreet.com Ratings initiated coverage on March 13, 2006.

Westar Energy (WR - Get Report), an electric utility, has been downgraded to hold. Strengths such as revenue growth, a reasonable valuation and an increase in net income are held back by feeble EPS growth, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow. For the fourth quarter, revenue rose 15% year over year to $392.9 million, but EPS declined by a penny to 14 cents. Return on equity has slightly decreased to 9% year over year. This implies a minor weakness in the organization. In addition, the company's return on equity trails the industry average. Net operating cash flow has decreased 62% to $37.6 million from the year-ago quarter. In addition, when comparing the cash generation rate with the industry average, the firm's growth is significantly lower. Westar Energy had been rated buy since TheStreet.com Ratings initiated coverage on March 13, 2006.

Additional ratings changes from March 14 are listed below.

Ticker Company Name Change New Rating Former Rating
ADGF ADAMS GOLF INC Upgrade Buy Hold
ATAC AFTERMARKET TECHNOLOGY CORP Downgrade Hold Buy
AMAC AMERICAN MEDICAL ALERT CORP Downgrade Hold Buy
ASPM ASPECT MEDICAL SYSTEMS INC Downgrade Sell Hold
ADSK AUTODESK INC Downgrade Hold Buy
GSK GLAXOSMITHKLINE PLC Downgrade Hold Buy
GTN.A GRAY TELEVISION INC Downgrade Sell Hold
GTN GRAY TELEVISION INC Downgrade Sell Hold
JAX J. ALEXANDER'S CORP Downgrade Hold Buy
MCHP MICROCHIP TECHNOLOGY INC Upgrade Buy Hold
NPBC NATIONAL PENN BANCSHARES INC Upgrade Buy Hold
WR WESTAR ENERGY INC Downgrade Hold Buy
WLP WELLPOINT INC Downgrade Hold Buy
EXLS EXLSERVICE HOLDINGS INC Initiated Hold
VRGY VERIGY LTD Upgrade Hold Sell
ULTR ULTRAPETROL BAHAMAS LTD Downgrade Sell Hold

This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.com Ratings.
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