BOSTON (

TheStreet

) -- TheStreet.com's stock-rating model downgraded Canadian telecommunications provider

BCE

(BCE) - Get Report

to "hold."

The numbers

: Second-quarter net income decreased 5% to $372 million, or 46 cents a share, as revenue declined 2% to $4.3 billion. BCE's gross and operating margins remained steady at 72% and 23%, respectively. A quick ratio of 0.7 indicates weak liquidity. A debt-to-equity ratio of 0.7 reflects conservative leverage.

The numbers

: BCE has risen 20% this year, more than the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

and

S&P 500 Index

. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 19, on par with the market, but more expensive than shares of telecom peers. The shares pay a 6.2% dividend yield.

The model upgraded railroad operator

Genesee & Wyoming

(GWR) - Get Report

to "buy."

The numbers

: Third-quarter net income inched up 2% to $22 million, but earnings per share fell 13% to 48 cents because its share count had risen. Revenue declined 14% to $136 million. The company's gross margin rose from 42% to 47%, but its operating margin remained steady at 21%. A quick ratio of 1.1 indicates adequate liquidity. A debt-to-equity ratio of 0.7 is less than the industry average, demonstrating restrained leverage.

The stock

: Genesee & Wyoming has fallen 3% this year, lagging behind major U.S. indices. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 16, a discount to the market and railroad peers. The company doesn't pay dividends.

The model downgraded

HCP

(HCP) - Get Report

, a real estate investment trust that focuses on health care properties, to "hold."

The numbers

: The company swung to a third-quarter loss of $47 million, or 19 cents a share, from a profit of $125 million, or 36 cents, in the year-earlier period. Revenue dropped 11% to $297 million. HCP's gross and operating margins decreased from 56% to 49%. The company has a poor financial position, with $5.6 billion of debt and $176 million of cash.

The stock

: HCP has climbed 5% this year, trailing major U.S. indices. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 87, a premium to the market and REITs because of the quarterly loss. The shares pay a 6.3% cash distribution yield. Cash distributions are taxed differently than dividends.

The model downgraded payment processor

Heartland Payment Systems

(HPY)

to "sell."

The numbers

: The company swung to a third-quarter loss of $14 million, or 36 cents a share, from a profit of $13 million, or 35 cents, in the year-earlier period. Revenue grew 4% to $442 million. Heartland's gross margin was unchanged at 11%, but its operating margin dropped from 5% to 3%. A quick ratio of 0.7 reflects less-than-ideal liquidity. A debt-to-equity ratio of 0.4 indicates modest leverage.

The stock

: Heartland Payment Systems has fallen 32% this year, underperforming major U.S. indices. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 28, a premium to the market and data processors. The shares pay a 0.3% dividend yield.

The model upgraded the insurer

Unitrin

( UTR) to "hold."

The numbers

: The company swung to a third-quarter profit of $62 million, or 98 cents a share, from a loss of $45 million, or 79 cents, in the year-earlier period. Revenue grew 5% to $726 million. Unitrin's gross and operating margins climbed from negative territory to 11%. The company's balance sheet is stable, with $717 million of cash and $561 million of debt.

The stock

: Unitrin has rallied 31% this year, beating the Dow and S&P 500. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 20, a slight premium to the market, but a discount to insurers. The shares pay a 3.8% dividend yield.

-- Reported by Jake Lynch in Boston.