Trade-Ideas: F5 Networks (FFIV) Is Today's

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.

Trade-Ideas LLC identified F5 Networks ( FFIV) as a "water-logged and getting wetter" (weak stocks crossing below support with today's range greater than 200%) candidate. In addition to specific proprietary factors, Trade-Ideas identified F5 Networks as such a stock due to the following factors:

  • FFIV has an average dollar-volume (as measured by average daily share volume multiplied by share price) of $110.5 million.
  • FFIV has traded 1.5 million shares today.
  • FFIV traded in a range 221.5% of the normal price range with a price range of $4.63.
  • FFIV traded below its daily resistance level (quality: 12 days, meaning that the stock is crossing a resistance level set by the last 12 calendar days. The resistance price is defined by the Price - $0.01 at the time of the signal).

Stocks matching the 'Water-Logged and Getting Wetter' criteria are worthwhile stocks to watch for a variety of factors including historical back testing and volatility. Trade-Ideas targets these opportunities because the stock is exhibiting an unusual behavior while displaying negative price action. In this case, the stock crossed an important inflection point; namely, "support" while at the same time the range of the stock's movement in price is twice its normal size. This large range foreshadows a possible continuation as the stock moves lower.

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More details on FFIV:

F5 Networks, Inc. provides application delivery networking technology that secures and optimizes the delivery of network-based applications, and the security, performance, and availability of servers and other network resources. FFIV has a PE ratio of 27.5. Currently there are 15 analysts that rate F5 Networks a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

The average volume for F5 Networks has been 1.7 million shares per day over the past 30 days. F5 has a market cap of $7.3 billion and is part of the technology sector and computer software & services industry. The stock has a beta of 2.57 and a short float of 5.3% with 3.36 days to cover. Shares are down 4.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

TheStreetRatings.com Analysis:

TheStreet Quant Ratings rates F5 Networks as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, deteriorating net income and premium valuation.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • FFIV's revenue growth trails the industry average of 30.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 5.0%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share.
  • FFIV has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, which we consider to be a relatively favorable sign. Along with the favorable debt-to-equity ratio, the company maintains an adequate quick ratio of 1.43, which illustrates the ability to avoid short-term cash problems.
  • F5 NETWORKS INC's earnings per share declined by 5.5% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, F5 NETWORKS INC increased its bottom line by earning $3.45 versus $2.97 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($4.52 versus $3.45).
  • Reflecting the weaknesses we have cited, including the decline in the company's earnings per share, FFIV has underperformed the S&P 500 Index, declining 15.80% from its price level of one year ago. Looking ahead, we do not see anything in this company's numbers that would change the one-year trend. It was down over the last twelve months; and it could be down again in the next twelve. Naturally, a bull or bear market could sway the movement of this stock.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and greatly underperformed compared to the Communications Equipment industry average. The net income has decreased by 5.7% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, dropping from $72.34 million to $68.18 million.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

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