ACE Ltd Stock Buy Recommendation Reiterated (ACE)

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) -- ACE (NYSE: ACE) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of A . The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and attractive valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Compared to its closing price of one year ago, ACE's share price has jumped by 27.59%, exceeding the performance of the broader market during that same time frame. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, ACE should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
  • ACE's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.20 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels.
  • ACE, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 0.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 8.1%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • ACE LTD's earnings per share declined by 44.8% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has suffered a declining pattern of earnings per share over the past two years. However, we anticipate this trend to reverse over the coming year. During the past fiscal year, ACE LTD reported lower earnings of $4.58 versus $9.09 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($7.90 versus $4.58).

ACE Limited, through its subsidiaries, provides a range of insurance and reinsurance products to insureds worldwide. ACE has a market cap of $27.43 billion and is part of the financial sector and insurance industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 10.1, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 14.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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

--Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff.

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