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TSC Ratings' Updates: General Electric

Shares are down 57.7% over the past year, underperforming the S&P 500. Turning toward the future, the fact that the stock has come down in price over the past year should not necessarily be interpreted as a negative; it could be one of the factors that may help make the stock attractive down the road. Right now, however, we believe that it is too soon to buy.

We've downgraded Retail Ventures (RVI) from hold to sell, driven by its generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself, feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income and disappointing return on equity.

Retail Ventures ahs experienced a steep decline in EPS in the most recent quarter compared with the year-ago quarter, and we anticipate that the company's yearlong pattern of negative EPS growth should continue in the coming year. Net income fell to -$43.9 million from $28.2 million in the year-ago quarter, underperforming the multiline retail industry average but outperforming the S&P 500. ROE has decreased greatly from the year-ago quarter, a signal of major weakness within the corporation. The company's debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low at 0.7, below the industry average, but its 0.9 quick ratio is could be a cause for future problems.

Shares have tumbled by 48.8% over the past year, underperforming the S&P 500, but despite the heavy decline in its share price, this stock is still more expensive (when compared to its current earnings) than most other companies in its industry.

All ratings changes from June 24 are listed below.

Company (TICKER)
Computer Task Group(CTGX) BUY Upgrade HOLD
General Electric(GE) SELL Downgrade HOLD
International Absorbents(IAX) BUY Upgrade HOLD
LML Payment Systems(LMLP) HOLD Upgrade SELL
Motorcar Parts of America(MPAA) SELL Downgrade HOLD
Retail Ventures(RVI) SELL Downgrade HOLD
Stewardship Financial(SSFN) HOLD Downgrade BUY

Note: Our quantitative model makes stock recommendations based on GAAP figures that may differ materially from data as reported by the companies themselves. As a result, rating changes are occasionally driven by so-called nonrecurring items. As always, we urge readers to use TSC Ratings' reports in conjunction with additional information to construct their opinions on the value that should be placed on any given stock. Ratings, recently cited for Best Stock Selection from October 2007 through February 2009 , is an independent research provider that combines fundamental and technical analysis to offer investors tremendous value in volatile times. To see how your portfolio can use this research, click here now!
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