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) -- Equity Lifestyle Properties (NYSE: ELS) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, revenue growth and good cash flow from operations. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook.
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- Compared to where it was a year ago today, the stock is now trading at a higher level, reflecting both the market's overall trend during that period and the fact that the company's earnings growth has been robust. Looking ahead, unless broad bear market conditions prevail, we still see more upside potential for this stock, despite the fact that it has already risen over the past year.
- EQUITY LIFESTYLE PROPERTIES reported significant earnings per share improvement 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, EQUITY LIFESTYLE PROPERTIES increased its bottom line by earning $1.32 versus $0.74 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.69 versus $1.32).
- The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) industry. The net income increased by 126.8% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $16.46 million to $37.34 million.
- Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 9.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 5.0%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
- Net operating cash flow has slightly increased to $78.98 million or 8.92% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, EQUITY LIFESTYLE PROPERTIES has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -62.20%.
-- Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff