Spartan Motors Stock Upgraded (SPAR)

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Spartan Motors (Nasdaq: SPAR) 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, compelling growth in net income, increase in stock price during the past year and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 3.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 15.2%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • SPAR's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.03 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. To add to this, SPAR has a quick ratio of 1.69, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Auto Components industry. The net income increased by 205.9% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$2.22 million to $2.35 million.
  • Compared to where it was a year ago today, the stock is now trading at a higher level, reflecting both the market's overall trend during that period and the fact that the company's earnings growth has been robust. Looking ahead, the stock's rise over the last year has already helped drive it to a level which is relatively expensive compared to the rest of its industry. We feel, however, that the other strengths this company displays justify these higher price levels.
  • SPARTAN MOTORS INC reported significant earnings per share improvement 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, SPARTAN MOTORS INC reported lower earnings of $0.02 versus $0.23 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.22 versus $0.02).

Spartan Motors, Inc. engages in the design, engineering, manufacture, and sale of specialized motor vehicle chassis and bodies primarily in the United States, Canada, South America, and Asia. The company operates in two segments, Specialty Vehicle, and Service and Delivery Vehicles. Spartan has a market cap of $163.6 million and is part of the consumer goods sector and automotive industry. Shares are up 0.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

You can view the full Spartan Ratings Report or get investment ideas from our investment research center.

-- Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff

TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.
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