Hecla Mining Company Stock Upgraded (HL)

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) -- Hecla Mining Company (NYSE: HL) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • HL's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.01 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 2.66, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • The gross profit margin for HECLA MINING CO is rather high; currently it is at 62.30%. 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 -1.10% is in-line with the industry average.
  • HL, with its decline in revenue, underperformed when compared the industry average of 20.6%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues fell by 32.1%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • HECLA MINING CO 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. We feel it is likely to report a decline in earnings in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, HECLA MINING CO increased its bottom line by earning $0.51 versus $0.13 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 65.7% in earnings ($0.18 versus $0.51).
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Metals & Mining industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 101.6% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $55.92 million to -$0.89 million.
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Hecla Mining Company, together with its subsidiaries, discovers, acquires, develops, produces, and markets precious and base metals worldwide. It offers gold and silver to precious metals traders; and lead, zinc, and bulk concentrates to custom smelters. The company has a P/E ratio of 21.1, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Hecla has a market cap of $1.81 billion and is part of the basic materials sector and metals & mining industry. Shares are up 21% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

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

-- Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff

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.

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