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) -- Bankrate (NYSE: RATE) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from sell to hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, attractive valuation levels and notable return on equity. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, unimpressive growth in net income and weak operating cash flow.
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- Although RATE's debt-to-equity ratio of 0.23 is very low, it is currently higher than that of the industry average. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 2.66, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
- In comparison to the other companies in the Internet Software & Services industry and the overall market, BANKRATE INC's return on equity is significantly below that of the industry average and is below that of the S&P 500.
- Despite any intermediate fluctuations, we have only bad news to report on this stock's performance over the last year: it has tumbled by 42.62%, worse than the S&P 500's performance. Consistent with the plunge in the stock price, the company's earnings per share are down 100.00% compared to the year-earlier quarter. Despite the heavy decline in its share price, this stock is still more expensive (when compared to its current earnings) than most other companies in its industry.
- 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 Internet Software & Services industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 97.5% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $14.05 million to $0.34 million.
-- Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff