BOSTON (

TheStreet Ratings

) -- Every trading day TheStreet Ratings' stock model reviews the investment ratings on around 4,800 U.S. traded stocks for potential upgrades or downgrades based on the latest available financial results and trading activity.

TheStreet Ratings released rating changes on 34 U.S. common stocks for week ending September 16, 2011. 14 stocks were upgraded and 20 stocks were downgraded by our stock model.

Rating Change #10

Guess? Inc

(GES) - Get Report

has been downgraded by TheStreet Ratings from buy to hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income, weak operating cash flow and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 7.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 17.9%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share.
  • Although GES's debt-to-equity ratio of 0.01 is very low, it is currently higher than that of the industry average. To add to this, GES has a quick ratio of 1.89, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • GUESS INC's earnings per share declined by 9.7% 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, GUESS INC increased its bottom line by earning $3.12 versus $2.61 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($3.30 versus $3.12).
  • Net operating cash flow has decreased to $40.54 million or 27.72% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed against the S&P 500 and did not exceed that of the Specialty Retail industry. The net income has decreased by 9.1% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, dropping from $66.76 million to $60.66 million.

Guess , Inc. designs, markets, distributes, and licenses lifestyle collections of apparel and accessories for men, women, and children. It offers collections of denim and cotton clothing, including jeans, pants, overalls, skirts, dresses, shorts, blouses, shirts, jackets, and knitwear. The company has a P/E ratio of 11, equal to the average retail industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Guess has a market cap of $3 billion and is part of the

services

sector and

retail

industry. Shares are down 31.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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Guess Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

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.

Rating Change #9

Flowserve

(FLS) - Get Report

has been downgraded by TheStreet Ratings from buy to hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and growth in earnings per share. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including weak operating cash flow, a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself and disappointing return on equity.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • FLS's revenue growth trails the industry average of 36.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 17.1%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • FLS's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.22 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. Although the company had a strong debt-to-equity ratio, its quick ratio of 0.92 is somewhat weak and could be cause for future problems.
  • FLS has underperformed the S&P 500 Index, declining 13.26% from its price level of one year ago. The fact that the stock is now selling for less than others in its industry in relation to its current earnings is not reason enough to justify a buy rating at this time.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to -$9.61 million or 109.98% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.

Flowserve Corporation develops, manufactures, and sells precision engineered flow control equipment. The company operates in three segments: FSG Engineered Product Division, FSG Industrial Product Division, and Flow Control Division segments. The company has a P/E ratio of 12.1, equal to the average industrial industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Flowserve has a market cap of $4.9 billion and is part of the

industrial goods

sector and

industrial

industry. Shares are down 24.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

You can view the full

Flowserve Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

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.

Rating Change #8

Western Union

(WU) - Get Report

has been downgraded by TheStreet Ratings from buy to hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including generally poor debt management and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • WESTERN UNION CO has improved earnings per share by 24.2% 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. This trend suggests that the performance of the business is improving. During the past fiscal year, WESTERN UNION CO increased its bottom line by earning $1.36 versus $1.21 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.57 versus $1.36).
  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 12.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 7.3%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • Net operating cash flow has slightly increased to $254.70 million or 1.19% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow, WESTERN UNION CO's cash flow growth rate is still lower than the industry average growth rate of 14.56%.
  • In its most recent trading session, WU has closed at a price level that was not very different from its closing price of one year earlier. This is probably due to its weak earnings growth as well as other mixed factors. The fact that the stock is now selling for less than others in its industry in relation to its current earnings is not reason enough to justify a buy rating at this time.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is very high at 9.46 and currently higher than the industry average, implying that there is very poor management of debt levels within the company.

The Western Union Company provides money transfer and payment services worldwide. The company's Consumer-to-Consumer segment offers consumer-to-consumer money transfer services through a network of third-party agents using multi-currency and real-time money transfer processing systems. The Western Union has a market cap of $10.4 billion and is part of the

services

sector and

diversified services

industry.

You can view the full

The Western Union Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

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.

Rating Change #7

Paccar Inc.

(PCAR) - Get Report

has been downgraded by TheStreet Ratings from buy to hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and impressive record of earnings per share growth. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, poor profit margins and weak operating cash flow.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • PCAR's very impressive revenue growth exceeded the industry average of 36.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 60.7%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.99, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels.
  • Net operating cash flow has decreased to $332.70 million or 35.28% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
  • PCAR has underperformed the S&P 500 Index, declining 15.41% from its price level of one year ago. Looking ahead, we do not see anything in this company's numbers that would change the one-year trend. It was down over the last twelve months; and it could be down again in the next twelve. Naturally, a bull or bear market could sway the movement of this stock.

PACCAR Inc, together with its subsidiaries, designs, manufactures, and distributes light-, medium-, and heavy-duty trucks and related aftermarket parts primarily in the United States and Europe. It markets its heavy-duty diesel trucks under the Kenworth, Peterbilt, and DAF nameplates. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.8, equal to the average automotive industry P/E ratio and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. PACCAR has a market cap of $13.6 billion and is part of the

consumer goods

sector and

automotive

industry. Shares are down 33.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

You can view the full

PACCAR Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

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.

Rating Change #6

Prudential Financial

(PRU) - Get Report

has been downgraded by TheStreet Ratings from buy to hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, attractive valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, poor profit margins and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • PRU's revenue growth trails the industry average of 20.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 10.7%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $2,943.00 million or 13.10% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow of 13.10%, PRUDENTIAL FINANCIAL INC is still growing at a significantly lower rate than the industry average of 82.65%.
  • The gross profit margin for PRUDENTIAL FINANCIAL INC is currently lower than what is desirable, coming in at 29.40%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 6.90% trails that of the industry average.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Insurance industry. The net income has decreased by 22.2% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, dropping from $1,077.00 million to $838.00 million.

Prudential Financial, Inc., through its subsidiaries, offers various financial products and services in the United States, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. The company operates through three divisions: The U.S. Retirement Solutions and Investment Management, The U.S. The company has a P/E ratio of 8.4, equal to the average insurance industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Prudential Financial has a market cap of $23.4 billion and is part of the

financial

sector and

insurance

industry. Shares are down 13.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

You can view the full

Prudential Financial Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

investment research center

.

Rating Change #5

Chart Industries

(GTLS) - Get Report

has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, compelling growth in net income, solid stock price performance and impressive record of earnings per share growth. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • GTLS's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 36.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 44.2%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • The current debt-to-equity ratio, 0.41, is low and is below the industry average, implying that there has been successful management of debt levels. To add to this, GTLS has a quick ratio of 1.55, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Machinery industry. The net income increased by 341.5% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $2.40 million to $10.59 million.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 337.50% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 204.17% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Looking ahead, the stock's sharp 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 other strengths this company displays justify these higher price levels.
  • CHART INDUSTRIES INC 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, CHART INDUSTRIES INC reported lower earnings of $0.69 versus $2.10 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.98 versus $0.69).

Chart Industries, Inc. manufactures and supplies engineered equipment used in the production, storage, and end-use of hydrocarbon and industrial gases in the United States and internationally. The company has a P/E ratio of 43.9, equal to the average industrial industry P/E ratio and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Chart has a market cap of $1.5 billion and is part of the

industrial goods

sector and

industrial

industry. Shares are up 52.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

You can view the full

Chart Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

investment research center

.

Rating Change #4

Provident Energy

( PVX) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its growth in earnings per share, compelling growth in net income, revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally poor debt management on most measures that we evaluated.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • PROVIDENT ENERGY LTD 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. During the past fiscal year, PROVIDENT ENERGY LTD increased its bottom line by earning $0.38 versus $0.02 in the prior year.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry. The net income increased by 111.7% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$344.88 million to $40.22 million.
  • PVX's revenue growth trails the industry average of 38.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 13.7%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 111.33% to $26.44 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, PROVIDENT ENERGY LTD has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 38.28%.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 275.00% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 26.96% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. We feel that the stock's sharp appreciation over the last year has driven it to a price level which is now somewhat expensive compared to the rest of its industry. The other strengths this company shows, however, justify the higher price levels.

Provident Energy Ltd. engages in the natural gas liquids (NGLs) infrastructure and marketing business in Canada and the United States. The company involves in the extraction, processing, storage, transportation, and marketing of NGLs, as well as offers these services to third party customers. Provident Energy has a market cap of $2.3 billion and is part of the

basic materials

sector and

energy

industry.

You can view the full

Provident Energy Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

investment research center

.

Rating Change #3

Universal Display Corporation

(PANL) - Get Report

has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from sell to hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and solid stock price performance. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company's return on equity has been disappointing.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 15.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 33.2%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • PANL 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. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 18.26, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 109.63% to $0.22 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, UNIVERSAL DISPLAY CORP has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -49.45%.
  • The company's current return on equity greatly increased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of significant strength within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Electronic Equipment, Instruments & Components industry and the overall market, UNIVERSAL DISPLAY CORP's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

Universal Display Corporation engages in the research, development, and commercialization of organic light emitting diode (OLED) technologies and materials for use in flat panel display, solid-state lighting, and other product applications. Universal Display has a market cap of $2.3 billion and is part of the

technology

sector and

computer hardware

industry. Shares are up 67.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

You can view the full

Universal Display Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

investment research center

.

Rating Change #2

Broadridge Financial Solutions

(BR) - Get Report

has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 12.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 3.4%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • 36.30% is the gross profit margin for BROADRIDGE FINANCIAL SOLUTNS which we consider to be strong. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 15.00% is above that of the industry average.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.66, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Although the company had a strong debt-to-equity ratio, its quick ratio of 0.83 is somewhat weak and could be cause for future problems.
  • BROADRIDGE FINANCIAL SOLUTNS has improved earnings per share by 8.3% 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, BROADRIDGE FINANCIAL SOLUTNS reported lower earnings of $1.34 versus $1.62 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.55 versus $1.34).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the IT Services industry average, but is less than that of the S&P 500. The net income increased by 10.6% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $105.10 million to $116.20 million.

Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc. provides technology-based solutions to the financial services industry in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.3, below the average computer software & services industry P/E ratio of 15.5 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Broadridge Financial has a market cap of $2.5 billion and is part of the

technology

sector and

computer software & services

industry. Shares are down 4% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

You can view the full

Broadridge Financial Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

investment research center

.

Rating Change #1

Markel Corporation

(MKL) - Get Report

has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, reasonable valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • MKL's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 20.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 25.6%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • Looking at where the stock is today compared to one year ago, we find that it is not only higher, but it has also clearly outperformed the rise in the S&P 500 over the same period. Although other factors naturally played a role, the company's strong earnings growth was key. Turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, it goes without saying that even the best stocks can fall in an overall down market. However, in any other environment, this stock still has good upside potential despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 84.89% to $109.55 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, MARKEL CORP has also modestly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 82.65%.
  • MARKEL CORP has improved earnings per share by 46.7% 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. However, we anticipate underperformance relative to this pattern in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, MARKEL CORP increased its bottom line by earning $27.30 versus $20.52 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 53.8% in earnings ($12.60 versus $27.30).

Markel Corporation markets and underwrites specialty insurance products and programs. It operates in three segments: Excess and Surplus Lines, Specialty Admitted, and London markets. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.6, equal to the average insurance industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Markel has a market cap of $3.8 billion and is part of the

financial

sector and

insurance

industry. Shares are up 4% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

You can view the full

Markel Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

investment research center

.

-- Reported by Chris Stuart, CFA in Boston, MA.

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For all other upgrades and downgrades made by TheStreet Ratings Model today check out our

upgrades and downgrades list

.

Equity research manager Chris Stuart, CFA, joined TheStreet Ratings after working as a senior investment analyst with Merrill Lynch covering small-cap equity and alternative investment strategies. Prior to that, Stuart worked for One Beacon Insurance as an actuarial analyst and at H&R Block as a financial adviser. Stuart earned his bachelor's degree in finance from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He holds a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation and is a member of the Boston Security Analysts Society (BSAS) and the CFA Institute.