NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Noble Corp. (NE) - Get Noble Corporation plc Report were gaining by 5.7% to $13.10 in early afternoon trading on Friday, as oil prices continued to rise for a second day in a row.

WTI crude oil for October delivery was up 4.91% to $44.65 a barrel and Brent crude oil for October delivery was up 4.14% to $49.53 a barrel.

Crude oil prices were rising for a second day following positive U.S. economic data and reports of low crude supply in Nigeria, according to Reuters. A pipeline outage in Nigeria help contribute to the country's low supplies, contributing to the recent rise in oil prices.

Stabilizing markets also helped contribute to rising oil prices, according to Reuters. Chinese stock markets ended up on Friday after a volatile start earlier in the week.

"A price recovery was on the cards at any time given that oil prices had slumped virtually continuously since the end of June by a total of more than 30 percent," Commerzbank Senior Oil and Commodities Analyst Carsten Fritsch told Reuters.

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Noble Corp. is a British company that operates as a major contract driller of oil and natural gas wells. The company largely focuses on ultra-deepwater and high-specification jack-up drilling opportunities.

TheStreet Ratings team rates NOBLE CORP PLC as a Hold with a ratings score of C-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate NOBLE CORP PLC (NE) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed – some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins, 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 disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself."

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

  • The gross profit margin for NOBLE CORP PLC is rather high; currently it is at 57.55%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 20.04% is above that of the industry average.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.73, 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 0.89 is somewhat weak and could be cause for future problems.
  • Current return on equity is lower than its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a clear sign of weakness within the company. Compared to other companies in the Energy Equipment & Services industry and the overall market, NOBLE CORP PLC's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • Net operating cash flow has decreased to $399.30 million or 24.09% when compared to the same quarter last year. In conjunction, when comparing current results to the industry average, NOBLE CORP PLC has marginally lower results.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: NE Ratings Report