Penn Virginia Corporation Stock Upgraded (PVA)

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) -- Penn Virginia Corporation (NYSE: PVA) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from sell to hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance and increase in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including generally higher debt management risk, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • PVA's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 3.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 53.0%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 94.28% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 189.46% 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.
  • PENN VIRGINIA CORP reported significant earnings per share improvement 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, PENN VIRGINIA CORP reported poor results of -$2.36 versus -$2.14 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.32 versus -$2.36).
  • Currently the debt-to-equity ratio of 1.62 is quite high overall and when compared to the industry average, suggesting that the current management of debt levels should be re-evaluated.
  • Current return on equity is lower than its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a clear sign of weakness within the company. Compared to other companies in the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry and the overall market, PENN VIRGINIA CORP's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

Penn Virginia Corporation, an independent oil and gas company, engages in the exploration and development of natural gas and oil properties in various onshore regions of the United States. Penn Virginia has a market cap of $842.9 million and is part of the basic materials sector and energy industry. Shares are up 36.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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

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Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors, reporters and analysts from holding positions in any individual stocks.

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