NEW YORK (

TheStreet

)

-- Huntington

(Nasdaq:

HBAN

) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins, impressive record of earnings per share growth, increase in net income and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 922.65% to $208.07 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, HUNTINGTON BANCSHARES has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 226.59%.
  • The gross profit margin for HUNTINGTON BANCSHARES is currently very high, coming in at 83.80%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Despite the strong results of the gross profit margin, HBAN's net profit margin of 17.80% significantly trails the industry average.
  • Regardless of the drop in revenue, the company managed to outperform against the industry average of 10.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 9.8%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.
  • HUNTINGTON BANCSHARES 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. However, we anticipate underperformance relative to this pattern in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, HUNTINGTON BANCSHARES increased its bottom line by earning $0.60 versus $0.19 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 1.7% in earnings ($0.59 versus $0.60).
  • The company, on the basis of net income growth from the same quarter one year ago, has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and greatly underperformed compared to the Commercial Banks industry average. The net income increased by 3.2% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $122.90 million to $126.86 million.

.

Huntington Bancshares Incorporated operates as the holding company for The Huntington National Bank that provides commercial, small business, and consumer banking services. The company has a P/E ratio of 10.3, above the average banking industry P/E ratio of 9.9 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Huntington has a market cap of $5.02 billion and is part of the

financial

sector and

banking

industry. Shares are up 9.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

You can view the full

Huntington Ratings Report

or get investment ideas from our

investment research center

.

-- Written by a member of TheStreet RatingsStaff

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