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NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- NetScout Systems Inc. (NTCT) - Get Free Report was upgraded to "buy" from "hold" at Wunderlich Securities due to the company's strong first quarter 2014 results.

The firm also raised its price target to $46 from $35 on the company, which designs, develops, markets and sells support application and network performance and service assurance solutions for Internet protocol based service delivery environments.

The firm reported it earned a GAAP net income of $16.7 million, or 40 cents per share in the first quarter 2014, versus the $14.6 million, or 34 cents per share, in net income the company earned during the same quarter 2013.

Non-GAAP net income for the first quarter 2014 is $20.2 million, or 48 cents per share, versus the $18.1 million, or 43 cents per share reported in the first quarter 2013.

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TheStreet Ratings team rates NETSCOUT SYSTEMS INC as a Buy with a ratings score of A-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate NETSCOUT SYSTEMS INC (NTCT) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. 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, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth and compelling growth in net income. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results."

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

  • NTCT's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 11.6%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 20.6%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • NTCT 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 the favorable debt-to-equity ratio, the company maintains an adequate quick ratio of 1.45, which illustrates the ability to avoid short-term cash problems.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 57.69% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 51.49% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, NTCT should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
  • NETSCOUT SYSTEMS INC 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. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, NETSCOUT SYSTEMS INC increased its bottom line by earning $0.95 versus $0.77 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.50 versus $0.95).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Software industry. The net income increased by 55.3% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $11.14 million to $17.29 million.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: NTCT Ratings Report

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