NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- U.S. Energy Corp (Nasdaq: USEG) has been downgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity, poor profit margins, weak operating cash flow and generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Despite any intermediate fluctuations, we have only bad news to report on this stock's performance over the last year: it has tumbled by 25.05%, worse than the S&P 500's performance. Consistent with the plunge in the stock price, the company's earnings per share are down 260.00% compared to the year-earlier quarter. Naturally, the overall market trend is bound to be a significant factor. However, 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.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to $1.48 million or 51.15% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
  • The gross profit margin for U S ENERGY CORP/WY is currently extremely low, coming in at 9.90%. It has decreased significantly from the same period last year. Along with this, the net profit margin of -45.20% is significantly below that of the industry average.
  • The company's current return on equity has slightly decreased from the same quarter one year prior. This implies a minor weakness in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Metals & Mining industry and the overall market, U S ENERGY CORP/WY's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Metals & Mining industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 244.7% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $1.53 million to -$2.21 million.

U.S. Energy Corp. engages in the acquisition, exploration, holding, sale, and/or development of mineral properties. It primarily explores for molybdenum, and other base and precious metals. U.S. Energy has a market cap of $119.4 million and is part of the basic materials sector and energy industry. Shares are down 27.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

You can view the full U.S. Energy Ratings Report or get investment ideas from our investment research center.
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U.S. Energy Corp. Stock Upgraded (USEG)