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) -- Alon USA Energy (NYSE: ALJ) 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, attractive valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.
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- Powered by its strong earnings growth of 253.84% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 100.22% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, ALJ should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
- ALON USA ENERGY INC 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, ALON USA ENERGY INC increased its bottom line by earning $1.15 versus $0.67 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.91 versus $1.15).
- The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry. The net income increased by 284.5% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$29.37 million to $54.18 million.
- Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 420.74% to $160.77 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, ALON USA ENERGY INC has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -25.53%.
-- Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff