The following ratings changes were generated on Monday, Nov. 17.

We've upgraded Cablevision ( CVC) from sell to hold. Strengths include its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth and increase in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the stock has had a generally disappointing performance in the past year.

Cablevision's revenue rose by 15.4% since the same quarter one year prior, outpacing the industry average of 9.8% growth and boosting earnings per share, which improved significantly in the most recent quarter compared with the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past two years, which we feel should continue, suggesting improving business performance. During the past fiscal year, Cablevision turned its bottom line around by earning 7 cents vs. -48 cents in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement to 67 cents.

The company's quick ratio of 0.33 is very low and demonstrates very weak liquidity. Cablevision's gross profit margin of 57.7% is rather high, but it has decreased from the same period last year. The net profit margin of 1.6% trails the industry average.

Shares are down 45.92% on the year, underperforming the S&P 500. But don't assume that it's sharp decline in share price makes the stock cheap and attractive. Based on its current price in relation to its earnings, Cablevision is still more expensive than most of the other companies in its industry

We've downgraded Foundry Networks ( FDRY), which designs, develops, manufactures, markets and sells switching and routing solutions, from buy to hold. Strengths include its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a decline in the stock price during the past year, deteriorating net income and disappointing return on equity.

Revenue increased slightly by 4% since the same quarter one year ago, but this growth does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share. Foundry has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, a relatively favorable sign. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 7.55, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.

Foundry experienced a steep decline in EPS in the most recent quarter compared with the same quarter a year ago, but we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, it increased its bottom line by earning 52 cents vs. 25 cents in the prior year, and this year, the market expects an improvement in earnings to 68 cents. The company's current return on equity has slightly decreased from the same quarter one year prior and is sigfnificantly below the industry average and the S&P 500, implying a minor weakness in the organization.

Shares are down 19.75% on the year, reflecting the market's overall decline (which was actually deeper) and the sharp decline in the company's EPS. Looking ahead, we do not see anything in this company's numbers that would change the one-year trend. It was down over the last 12 months, and it could be down again in the next 12. Naturally, a bull or bear market could sway the movement of this stock.

We've downgraded Kyocera ( KYO), which produces, and distributes fine ceramic and semiconductor parts, and telecommunications equipment worldwide, from hold to sell driven by its weak operating cash flow, decline in the stock price during the past year and feeble growth in its earnings per share.

Net operating cash flow has decreased to $254.20 million, or 37.78% when compared with the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing the cash generation rate to the industry average, the firm's growth is significantly lower. Kyocera's EPS declined by 7.2% in the most recent quarter compared with the same quarter a year ago, and we feel it is likely to report a decline in earnings in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, Kyocera increased its bottom line by earning $5.66 vs. $4.55 in the prior year, but for the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 47.9% in earnings to $2.95.

Net income decreased by 7.4%, from $237.81 million to $220.26 million. The return on equity has improved slightly over the same quarter one year prior, which can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. Kyocer's ROE is below that of both the electronic equipment, instruments and components industry and the S&P 500.

Shares are down 38.76% on the year, probably driven by the decline of similar magnitude in the overall market, as well as by lower earnings per share compared with the same quarter one year earlier. In one sense, the stock's sharp decline last year is a positive for future investors, making it cheaper (in proportion to its earnings over the past year) than most other stocks in its industry. But due to other concerns, we feel the stock is still not a good buy right now.

We've downgraded L-3 Communications ( LLL), which provides command, control, communications, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems, from buy to hold. Strengths include its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a decline in the stock price during the past year and poor profit margins.

Revenue increased by 6.2% since the same quarter a year ago, outpacing the industry average of 2% and boosting EPS. L-3 has improved earnings per share by 10.9% in the most recent quarter compared with the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past two years, which we feel should continue, suggesting improving business performance. During the past fiscal year, L-3 increased its bottom line by earning $5.97 vs. $4.21 in the prior year. This year, the market expects further improvement in earnings to $7.48.

The return on equity has improved slightly when compared with the same quarter one year prior, which can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. On the basis of ROE, L-3 has underperformed the aerospace and defense industry but outperformed the S&P 500. L-3's gross profit margin of 14.7% is extremely low, though it has increased from the same period last year. The 5.8% net profit margin trails the industry average. Shares have plunged by 37.35% compared with where it was selling one year ago, apparently dragged down by the decline we have seen in the S&P 500. Despite the heavy decline in its share price, this stock is still more expensive (when compared to its current earnings) than most other companies in its industry.

We've downgraded Morningstar ( MORN) from buy to hold. Strengths include its revenue growth, 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 a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself and premium valuation.

Revenue rose by 12.2% since the same quarter last year, outpacing the industry average of 9.8%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share. Morningstar 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. It also has a quick ratio of 1.85, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs. Morningstar's gross profit margin is currently very high, coming in at 73.80%, though it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Net profit margin of 17.70% significantly outperformed against the industry.

Shares are down 57.3% on the year, underperforming the S&P 500, but don't assume that the stock can now be tagged as cheap and attractive. The reality is that, based on its current price in relation to its earnings, Morningstar is still more expensive than most of the other companies in its industry.

Other ratings changes include Key Technology ( KTEC) and National Instruments ( NATI), both downgraded from buy to hold.

All ratings changes generated on Nov. 17 are listed below.
Ticker Company
Current
Change
Previous
AMRI Albany Molecular
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
ARCC Ares Capital
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
ATAC ATC Technology
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
BYI Bally Technologies
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
CCK Crown Holdings
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
CPTS Conceptus
HOLD
Upgrade
SELL
CRZO Carrizo Oil & Gas
HOLD
Upgrade
SELL
CVC Cablevision
HOLD
Upgrade
SELL
DUF Duff & Phelps
SELL
Initiated
ELOS Syneron Medical
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
FDRY Foundry Networks
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
GNK Genco Shipping & Trading
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
ISGT Insight Health
SELL
Initiated
JCDA Jacada
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
KCLI Kansas City Life Insurance
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
KSU Kansas City Southern
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
KTEC Key Technology
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
KYO Kyocera
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
LBTYB Liberty Global
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
LBTYK Liberty Global
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
LLL L-3 Communications
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
MORN Morningstar
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
MSCS MSC Software
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
NATI National Instruments
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY
NEPT Neptune Tech
SELL
Initiated
OFG Oriental Financial
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
PENX Penford
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
PHC PHC
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
TTI Tetra Technologies
SELL
Downgrade
HOLD
YAVY Yadkin Valley Financial
HOLD
Downgrade
BUY

Each business day, TheStreet.com Ratings updates its ratings on the stocks it covers. The proprietary ratings model projects a stock's total return potential over a 12-month period, including both price appreciation and dividends. Buy, hold or sell ratings designate how the Ratings group expects these stocks to perform against a general benchmark of the equities market and interest rates.

While the ratings model is quantitative, it uses both subjective and objective elements. For instance, subjective elements include expected equities market returns, future interest rates, implied industry outlook and company earnings forecasts. Objective elements include volatility of past operating revenue, financial strength and company cash flows.

However, the rating does not incorporate all of the factors that can alter a stock's performance. For example, it doesn't always factor in recent corporate or industry events that could affect the stock price, nor does it include recent technology developments and competitive dynamics that may affect the company.

For those reasons, we believe a rating alone cannot tell the whole story, and that it should be part of an investor's overall research.
This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.com Ratings.