Fifth Third Bancorp Stock Buy Recommendation Reiterated (FITB)

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) -- Fifth Third Bancorp (Nasdaq: FITB) 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, solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 16.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 0.3%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • 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 50.23% 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.
  • FIFTH THIRD BANCORP has improved earnings per share by 14.3% 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 two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, FIFTH THIRD BANCORP increased its bottom line by earning $1.18 versus $0.61 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.61 versus $1.18).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Commercial Banks industry average. The net income increased by 14.2% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $337.00 million to $385.00 million.
  • The gross profit margin for FIFTH THIRD BANCORP is currently very high, coming in at 88.10%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 22.60% is above that of the industry average.

Fifth Third Bancorp operates as a diversified financial services holding company in the United States. The company has a P/E ratio of 10, equal to the average banking industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Fifth Third has a market cap of $14.43 billion and is part of the financial sector and banking industry. Shares are up 23.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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

--Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff.

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