Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model. NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Hancock Holding Company (Nasdaq:HBHC) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, expanding profit margins, growth in earnings per share and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.
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- The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Commercial Banks industry. The net income increased by 54.7% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $30.38 million to $46.98 million.
- The gross profit margin for HANCOCK HOLDING CO is currently very high, coming in at 92.10%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 18.60% is above that of the industry average.
- HANCOCK HOLDING CO reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, HANCOCK HOLDING CO reported lower earnings of $1.21 versus $1.40 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.20 versus $1.21).
- Despite the weak revenue results, HBHC has outperformed against the industry average of 18.6%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 3.7%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.
- The return on equity has improved slightly when compared to the same quarter one year prior. This can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. When compared to other companies in the Commercial Banks industry and the overall market, HANCOCK HOLDING CO's return on equity is below that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
-- Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff
Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model. FREE from Real Money's Jim Cramer: Winners and Losers Election 2012 - Steps to take NOW so you can profit no matter who is in charge! Free download now.
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