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Analysts' Actions: Dunkin Brands, F5 Networks, Hertz, JetBlue

Stocks in this article: DNKN HTZ JBLU PNRA SXC FFIV

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- RATINGS CHANGES

Carnival (CCL) was upgraded to buy at TheStreet Ratings.

Dunkin Brands (DNKN) was upgraded at Barclays to overweight. Twelve-month price target was raised to $51 on high visibility of unit growth and the 100% franchise model, Barclays said.

F5 Networks (FFIV) was upgraded at ISI Group to strong buy from buy. Partnerships with Cisco (CSCO) and VMware (VMW) should help drive growth, ISI Group said.

Read More: 10 Stocks Carl Icahn Loves in 2014

Hertz (HTZ) was downgraded at Deutsche Bank to hold from buy. Twelve-month price target is $25. Company slashed its earnings guidance, Deutsche Bank said.

Hertz was downgraded at J.P. Morgan to neutral from overweight. 8-K filing overnight had multiple pieces of bad news, J.P. Morgan said.

Illumina (ILMN) was upgraded at Wedbush to outperform from neutral. Twelve-month price target is $200. Estimates were also increased, following the recent LabCorp (LH) win, Wedbush said.

JetBlue (JBLU) was upgraded at Cowen to outperform from market perform. Twelve-month price target is $15. Company is reworking its business model to increase profitability, Cowen said.

Panera (PNRA) was upgraded at Barclays to overweight. Leader in fast-casual restaurant space should benefit from continued rollout of modifications to locations, Barclays said.

Regency Energy Partners (RGP) was downgraded to hold at TheStreet Ratings.

Suncoke Energy (SXC) was downgraded at Credit Suisse to neutral from outperform. Twelve-month price target is $26. Lower near-term visibility in the steel sector, Credit Suisse said.

Read More: 5 Signs It's Time to Buy a Home

Editor's note: To see analysts' stock comments and changes to price targets and earnings estimates, go to "Street Notes" which is available only to Real Money subscribers. To find out how to become a subscriber, please click here.

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Now let's look at TheStreet Ratings' take on some of these stocks.

TheStreet Ratings team rates HERTZ GLOBAL HOLDINGS INC as a Buy with a ratings score of B-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate HERTZ GLOBAL HOLDINGS INC (HTZ) a BUY. This is driven by multiple strengths, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, compelling growth in net income, good cash flow from operations, solid stock price performance and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated."

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

  • HTZ's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 8.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 10.2%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • HERTZ GLOBAL HOLDINGS INC reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past year. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, HERTZ GLOBAL HOLDINGS INC increased its bottom line by earning $0.76 versus $0.54 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.84 versus $0.76).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Road & Rail industry. The net income increased by 98.4% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$36.80 million to -$0.60 million.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $738.00 million or 25.50% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of -2.23%.
  • Compared to where it was a year ago today, the stock is now trading at a higher level, reflecting both the market's overall trend during that period and the fact that the company's earnings growth has been robust. Looking ahead, the stock's rise over the last year has already helped drive it to a level which is relatively expensive compared to the rest of its industry. We feel, however, that the other strengths this company displays justify these higher price levels.

TheStreet Ratings team rates JETBLUE AIRWAYS CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of B. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate JETBLUE AIRWAYS CORP (JBLU) a BUY. This is driven by a few notable strengths, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, revenue growth and attractive valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins."

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

  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 518.18% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 85.53% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Turning to the future, naturally, any stock can fall in a major bear market. However, in almost any other environment, the stock should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed nice gains in the past year.
  • JETBLUE AIRWAYS CORP reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. 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, JETBLUE AIRWAYS CORP increased its bottom line by earning $0.51 versus $0.39 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.69 versus $0.51).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Airlines industry. The net income increased by 538.9% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $36.00 million to $230.00 million.
  • The revenue growth significantly trails the industry average of 50.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 11.8%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.

This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.

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