Coca-Cola Co Continues With Buy Recommendation

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) -- Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO) 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 reasonable valuation levels, expanding profit margins and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • COCA-COLA CO' earnings per share from the most recent quarter came in slightly below the year earlier quarter. 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, COCA-COLA CO increased its bottom line by earning $1.96 versus $1.85 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.10 versus $1.96).
  • The gross profit margin for COCA-COLA CO is rather high; currently it is at 64.59%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Despite the strong results of the gross profit margin, KO's net profit margin of 20.98% significantly trails the industry average.
  • KO, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 0.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 2.6%. The declining revenue appears to have seeped down to the company's bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • The company's current return on equity has slightly decreased from the same quarter one year prior. This implies a minor weakness in the organization. When compared to other companies in the Beverages industry and the overall market, COCA-COLA CO's return on equity exceeds that of the industry average and significantly exceeds that of the S&P 500.

The Coca-Cola Company, a beverage company, engages in the manufacture, marketing, and sale of nonalcoholic beverages worldwide. The company primarily offers sparkling beverages and still beverages. Coca-Cola has a market cap of $171.3 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector and food & beverage industry. Shares are up 6.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

You can view the full Coca-Cola Ratings Report or get investment ideas from our investment research center.

--Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff.

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