Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.
NEW YORK (
) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of A+ . The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, revenue growth and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.
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Highlights from the ratings report include:
- Investors have apparently begun to recognize positive factors similar to those we have mentioned in this report, including earnings growth. This has helped drive up the company's shares by a sharp 35.64% over the past year, a rise that has exceeded that of the S&P 500 Index. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, UNP should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
- UNION PACIFIC CORP has improved earnings per share by 18.4% 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. During the past fiscal year, UNION PACIFIC CORP increased its bottom line by earning $6.72 versus $5.53 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($8.28 versus $6.72).
- The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has greatly exceeded that of the S&P 500, but is less than that of the Road & Rail industry average. The net income increased by 15.3% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $904.00 million to $1,042.00 million.
- Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 13.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 4.7%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
- The current debt-to-equity ratio, 0.45, is low and is below the industry average, implying that there has been successful management of debt levels.
Union Pacific Corporation, through its subsidiary, Union Pacific Railroad Company, provides rail transportation services in North America. Union Pacific has a market cap of $59.36 billion and is part of the services sector and transportation industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.6, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 16.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.
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--Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff.
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