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) -- Williams Partners (NYSE: WPZ) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from hold to buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.
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- The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry average, but is less than that of the S&P 500. The net income increased by 5.3% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $243.00 million to $256.00 million.
- 37.29% is the gross profit margin for WILLIAMS PARTNERS LP which we consider to be strong. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 14.82% is above that of the industry average.
- Net operating cash flow has increased to $598.00 million or 31.42% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of -15.77%.
- Regardless of the drop in revenue, the company managed to outperform against the industry average of 6.6%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 5.0%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.
- WILLIAMS PARTNERS LP has improved earnings per share by 6.9% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. We feel it is likely to report a decline in earnings in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, WILLIAMS PARTNERS LP reported lower earnings of $1.94 versus $3.68 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 22.7% in earnings ($1.50 versus $1.94).