U.S. Bancorp Stock Buy Recommendation Reiterated (USB)

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- U.S. Bancorp (NYSE: USB) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of A-. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its growth in earnings per share, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins, increase in stock price during the past year and increase in net income. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • U S BANCORP has improved earnings per share by 7.0% 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, U S BANCORP increased its bottom line by earning $2.84 versus $2.45 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($3.02 versus $2.84).
  • The return on equity has improved slightly when compared to the same quarter one year prior. This can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Commercial Banks industry and the overall market, U S BANCORP's return on equity exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for U S BANCORP is currently very high, coming in at 85.25%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Despite the strong results of the gross profit margin, USB's net profit margin of 27.92% significantly trails the industry average.
  • The stock price has risen over the past year, but, despite its earnings growth and some other positive factors, it has underperformed the S&P 500 so far. 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.
  • USB, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 0.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 4.8%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.

U.S. Bancorp, a financial services holding company, provides a range of financial services in the United States. Its services include lending and depository services, cash management, capital market, and trust and investment management services. U.S has a market cap of $69.9 billion and is part of the financial sector and banking industry. Shares are up 18.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

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

--Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff.

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