NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Rand Logistics (Nasdaq: RLOG) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, revenue growth, good cash flow from operations, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally poor debt management on most measures that we evaluated. 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 26.56% over the past year, a rise that has exceeded that of the S&P 500 Index. Turning to the future, naturally, any stock can fall in a major bear market. However, in almost any other environment, the stock should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed nice gains in the past year.
- The revenue growth significantly trails the industry average of 65.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 24.7%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
- Net operating cash flow has increased to $12.44 million or 32.09% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, RAND LOGISTICS INC has also modestly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 30.69%.
- RAND LOGISTICS INC's earnings per share improvement from the most recent quarter was slightly positive. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, RAND LOGISTICS INC swung to a loss, reporting -$0.13 versus $0.04 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.30 versus -$0.13).
- The company, on the basis of net income growth from the same quarter one year ago, has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and greatly underperformed compared to the Marine industry average. The net income increased by 14.9% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $5.64 million to $6.48 million.