Visa Inc. Stock Buy Recommendation Reiterated (V)

Editor's Note: 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.

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Visa (NYSE: V) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of B . 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, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 7.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 10.5%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share.
  • V has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, which we consider to be a relatively favorable sign. Along with the favorable debt-to-equity ratio, the company maintains an adequate quick ratio of 1.11, which illustrates the ability to avoid short-term cash problems.
  • The gross profit margin for VISA INC is rather high; currently it is at 61.40%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Regardless of the strong results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of -71.70% is in-line with the industry average.
  • Compared to its closing price of one year ago, V's share price has jumped by 49.65%, exceeding the performance of the broader market during that same time frame. We feel that the stock's sharp appreciation over the last year has driven it to a price level which is now somewhat expensive compared to the rest of its industry. The other strengths this company shows, however, justify the higher price levels.
  • VISA INC has exprienced a steep decline in earnings per share in the most recent quarter in comparison to its performance from 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, VISA INC increased its bottom line by earning $5.15 versus $4.01 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($6.15 versus $5.15).

Visa Inc., a payments technology company, engages in the operation of retail electronic payments network worldwide. It facilitates commerce through the transfer of value and information among financial institutions, merchants, consumers, businesses, and government entities. The company has a P/E ratio of 68.7, below the average diversified services industry P/E ratio of 100 and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Visa has a market cap of $71.73 billion and is part of the services sector and diversified services industry. Shares are up 36.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

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

--Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff.

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