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Home Depot, StatoilHydro: Ratings Changes

TheStreet.com Ratings provides exclusive stock, ETF and mutual fund ratings and commentary based on award-winning, proprietary tools. Its "safety first" approach to investing aims to reduce risk while seeking total return performance.

BOSTON (TheStreet) -- TheStreet.com's stock-rating model upgraded home-improvement retailer Home Depot (HD) to "buy."

The numbers: Second-quarter earnings fell 7% to $1.1 billion, or 66 cents a share, as revenue declined 9% to $19 billion. Its operating margin remained less than 10% and its net margin was little changed at 6%. A quick ratio of 0.4 demonstrates weak liquidity, but its cash balance has almost tripled to $3.1 billion from the year-earlier quarter. A debt-to-equity ratio of 0.6 indicates conservative leverage. We give Home Depot a financial strength score of 9.9 out of 10 because of its resilient business model.

The stock: Home Depot has advanced 19% this year, more than the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 Index. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 19, on par with the market, and offers a 3.3% dividend yield, less than the average of S&P 500 companies.

The model upgraded packaging maker Sealed Air (SEE) to "buy."

The numbers: Second-quarter earnings decreased 3% to $61 million, or 33 cents, as revenue fell 20% to $1 billion. Its operating margin jumped from 10% to 12% and its net margin rose from 5% to 6%. A quick ratio of 0.8 indicates less-than-ideal liquidity and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1 reflects a sizable debt load.

The stock: Sealed Air is up 26% this year, outpacing the Dow and S&P 500. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 20, a slight premium to the market, and offers a 2.6% dividend yield.

The model upgraded paint retailer Sherwin-Williams (SHW) to "buy."

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