NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Acxiom Corporation (Nasdaq: ACXM) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself. Highlights from the ratings report include:
- ACXM's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 2.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 0.0%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
- The current debt-to-equity ratio, 0.45, is low and is below the industry average, implying that there has been successful management of debt levels. To add to this, ACXM has a quick ratio of 1.50, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
- ACXIOM CORP reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past year. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, ACXIOM CORP turned its bottom line around by earning $0.53 versus -$0.33 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.63 versus $0.53).
- The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the IT Services industry. The net income increased by 168.7% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$67.06 million to $46.07 million.
- Net operating cash flow has increased to $56.44 million or 34.27% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of 11.44%.
-- Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff