Covidien PLC Stock Buy Recommendation Reiterated (COV)

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) -- Covidien (NYSE: COV) 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 solid stock price performance, increase in net income, reasonable valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Health Care Equipment & Supplies industry average. The net income increased by 2.2% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $451.00 million to $461.00 million.
  • 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 29.80% over the past year, a rise that has exceeded that of the S&P 500 Index. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, COV should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $788.00 million or 37.52% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of -0.18%.
  • COVIDIEN PLC's earnings per share improvement from the most recent quarter was slightly positive. 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, COVIDIEN PLC increased its bottom line by earning $3.92 versus $3.78 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($4.42 versus $3.92).

Covidien plc develops, manufactures, and sells healthcare products for use in clinical and home settings worldwide. Covidien has a market cap of $27.66 billion and is part of the health care sector and health services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 14.9, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 29.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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

--Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff.

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