NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE: WHR) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations, growth in earnings per share and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity. Highlights from the ratings report include:
- The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the S&P 500 and greatly outperformed compared to the Household Durables industry average. The net income increased by 19.9% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $171.00 million to $205.00 million.
- Net operating cash flow has increased to $872.00 million or 24.39% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, WHIRLPOOL CORP has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -73.54%.
- The current debt-to-equity ratio, 0.60, is low and is below the industry average, implying that there has been successful management of debt levels. Despite the fact that WHR's debt-to-equity ratio is low, the quick ratio, which is currently 0.51, displays a potential problem in covering short-term cash needs.
- WHIRLPOOL CORP has improved earnings per share by 17.8% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. 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, WHIRLPOOL CORP reported lower earnings of $4.92 versus $7.98 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($6.18 versus $4.92).
-- Written by a member of TheStreet RatingsStaff