NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Pzena Investment Management (NYSE:PZN) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, expanding profit margins and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself. Highlights from the ratings report include:
- PZN has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, which we consider to be a relatively favorable sign.
- The gross profit margin for PZENA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT is rather high; currently it is at 50.00%. Regardless of PZN's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 5.10% trails the industry average.
- Despite the weak revenue results, PZN has outperformed against the industry average of 21.4%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 9.3%. The declining revenue appears to have seeped down to the company's bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
- PZENA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT's earnings per share declined by 18.2% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has suffered a declining pattern of earnings per share over the past year. However, we anticipate this trend reversing over the coming year. During the past fiscal year, PZENA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT reported lower earnings of $0.28 versus $0.33 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.38 versus $0.28).
- Return on equity has greatly decreased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of major weakness within the corporation. In comparison to the other companies in the Capital Markets industry and the overall market, PZENA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT's return on equity significantly exceeds that of the industry average and is above that of the S&P 500.
-- Written by a member of TheStreet RatingsStaff
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