Hewlett-Packard Co's Hold Recommendation Supported

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) -- Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a hold with a ratings score of C+. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth and compelling growth in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including poor profit margins and weak operating cash flow.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 120.91% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 72.66% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Regarding the stock's future course, our hold rating indicates that we do not recommend additional investment in this stock despite its gains in the past year.
  • HEWLETT-PACKARD CO 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 year. We feel that this trend should continue. This trend suggests that the performance of the business is improving. During the past fiscal year, HEWLETT-PACKARD CO turned its bottom line around by earning $2.62 versus -$6.45 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($3.66 versus $2.62).
  • The company's current return on equity greatly increased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of significant strength within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Computers & Peripherals industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, HEWLETT-PACKARD CO has underperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has exceeded that of the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for HEWLETT-PACKARD CO is currently lower than what is desirable, coming in at 25.74%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 4.85% significantly trails the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has decreased to $2,816.00 million or 30.62% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing the cash generation rate to the industry average, the firm's growth is significantly lower.

Hewlett-Packard Company, together with its subsidiaries, provides products, technologies, software, solutions, and services to individual consumers, small-and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), and large enterprises, including customers in the government, health, and education sectors worldwide. Hewlett-Packard has a market cap of $55.4 billion and is part of the technology sector and computer hardware industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 11.00, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 18.00. Shares are up 3.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

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

--Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff.

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