Trade-Ideas LLC identified

Ashland

(

ASH

) as a "water-logged and getting wetter" (weak stocks crossing below support with today's range greater than 200%) candidate. In addition to specific proprietary factors, Trade-Ideas identified Ashland as such a stock due to the following factors:

  • ASH has an average dollar-volume (as measured by average daily share volume multiplied by share price) of $39.7 million.
  • ASH has traded 60,837 shares today.
  • ASH traded in a range 465.5% of the normal price range with a price range of $7.74.
  • ASH traded below its daily resistance level (quality: 19 days, meaning that the stock is crossing a resistance level set by the last 19 calendar days. The resistance price is defined by the Price - $0.01 at the time of the signal).

Stocks matching the 'Water-Logged and Getting Wetter' criteria are worthwhile stocks to watch for a variety of factors including historical back testing and volatility. Trade-Ideas targets these opportunities because the stock is exhibiting an unusual behavior while displaying negative price action. In this case, the stock crossed an important inflection point; namely, "support" while at the same time the range of the stock's movement in price is twice its normal size. This large range foreshadows a possible continuation as the stock moves lower.

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More details on ASH:

Ashland Inc. operates as a specialty chemicals company worldwide. It operates through three segments: Specialty Ingredients, Performance Materials, and Valvoline. The stock currently has a dividend yield of 1.3%. ASH has a PE ratio of 34. Currently there are 5 analysts that rate Ashland a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

The average volume for Ashland has been 393,200 shares per day over the past 30 days. Ashland has a market cap of $7.5 billion and is part of the basic materials sector and chemicals industry. The stock has a beta of 1.22 and a short float of 3.4% with 5.13 days to cover. Shares are up 18.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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TheStreetRatings.com

Analysis:

TheStreet Quant Ratings

rates Ashland as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins, notable return on equity and solid stock price performance. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • ASHLAND INC reported flat earnings per share in the most recent quarter. 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, ASHLAND INC increased its bottom line by earning $2.76 versus $0.90 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($7.10 versus $2.76).
  • 39.21% is the gross profit margin for ASHLAND INC which we consider to be strong. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Regardless of the strong results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 6.97% trails the industry average.
  • ASH, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 5.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 7.6%. The declining revenue appears to have seeped down to the company's bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • After a year of stock price fluctuations, the net result is that ASH's price has not changed very much. Although its weak earnings growth may have played a role in this flat result, don't lose sight of the fact that the performance of the overall market, as measured by the S&P 500 Index, was essentially similar. 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.
  • 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. In comparison to the other companies in the Chemicals industry and the overall market, ASHLAND INC's return on equity is significantly below that of the industry average and is below that of the S&P 500.

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