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Will This Upgrade Help ConocoPhillips (COP) Stock Today?

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- ConocoPhillips (COP) stock has been upgraded to "outperform" from "sector perform," Howard Weil said Wednesday. The firm allocated a $90 price target, noting management should continue to execute its growth strategy. 

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Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates CONOCOPHILLIPS as a Buy with a ratings score of A-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate CONOCOPHILLIPS (COP) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and growth in earnings per share. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook."

Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:

  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 3.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 8.8%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • Investors have apparently begun to recognize positive factors similar to those we have mentioned in this report, including earnings growth. This has helped drive up the company's shares by a sharp 29.90% over the past year, a rise that has exceeded that of the S&P 500 Index. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, COP should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $6,336.00 million or 33.95% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of 17.43%.
  • CONOCOPHILLIPS's earnings per share improvement from the most recent quarter was slightly positive. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, CONOCOPHILLIPS increased its bottom line by earning $6.43 versus $5.90 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($6.45 versus $6.43).
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