The model upgraded oil-and-gas explorer Whiting Petroleum to "buy."
: Whiting swung to a first-quarter profit of $87 million, or $1.46 a share, from a loss of $44 million, or 92 cents, a year earlier. Revenue more than doubled. The operating margin turned positive. Whiting has $13 million of cash and $720 million of debt.
: Whiting has surged 163% during the past year, beating U.S. stock-market indices. It trades at a price-to-projected-earnings ratio of 13 and a price-to-book ratio of 1.8, 13% and 66% discounts to peer averages. It's costly based on sales.
: Of analysts covering Whiting Petroleum, 17, or 81%, advise purchasing its shares and four recommend holding them.
expects the stock to advance 24% to $110.
predicts that it will climb 22% to $108.
The model upgraded integrated oil-and-gas company Hess to "buy."
: Hess swung to a first-quarter profit of $538 million, or $1.65, from a loss of $59 million, or 18 cents, a year earlier. Revenue grew 34%. The operating margin widened from 2.6% to 12%. Hess has $1.4 billion of cash and $4.3 billion of debt.
: Hess has risen 13% during the past 12 months, trailing stock-market benchmarks. It sells for a price-to-projected-earnings ratio of 11 and a price-to-sales ratio of 0.7, 22% and 72% discounts to industry averages. It's also cheap based on book value.
: Of researchers following Hess, 13, or 65%, rate its stock "buy", six rate it "hold" and one ranks it "sell."
offers a price target of $81, leaving a potential 26% return.
foresees the shares hitting $75.
The model upgraded diversified energy company BP to "buy."
: First-quarter profit more than doubled to $6.1 billion, or $1.92, as revenue expanded 54% to $73 billion. The operating margin stretched from 7.6% to 11%. BP has $6.8 billion of cash and $32 billion of debt, equal to a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.3.
: BP has returned 22% during the past year, lagging behind stock-market indices. It trades at a PEG ratio, a measure of value relative to growth, of 0.3, a 53% discount to its peer average and a 66% discount relative to projected expansion.
: Of firms rating BP, nine, or 60%, advocate purchasing its shares and six recommend holding them.
forecasts a price of $72, leaving 37% of upside.
Bank of America
believes the shares will touch $69.50.
-- Reported by Jake Lynch in Boston.