3 Stocks Reiterated As A Buy: PCLN, LOW, MET

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) -- TheStreet Ratings team reiterated 3 stocks with a buy rating on Friday based on 32 different data factors including general market action, fundamental analysis and technical indicators. The in-depth analysis of these ratings decisions goes as follows:

priceline.com Incorporated:

priceline.com Incorporated (Nasdaq: PCLN) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of A. According to TheStreet Ratings team: The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth and expanding profit margins. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 8.4%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 29.4%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • PCLN's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.27 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 5.28, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 26.82% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 95.10% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, PCLN should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
  • PRICELINE.COM INC has improved earnings per share by 26.8% 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 two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, PRICELINE.COM INC increased its bottom line by earning $36.01 versus $27.71 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($51.71 versus $36.01).
  • The gross profit margin for PRICELINE.COM INC is currently very high, coming in at 86.10%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 24.53% significantly outperformed against the industry average.

priceline.com Incorporated operates as an online travel company. Priceline.com has a market cap of $71.5 billion and is part of the services sector and diversified services industry. Shares are up 17.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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Lowe's Companies Inc.:

Lowe's Companies (NYSE: LOW) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of A-. According to TheStreet Ratings team: The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, notable return on equity and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 5.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 5.5%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • LOWE'S COMPANIES INC has improved earnings per share by 11.5% 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 two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, LOWE'S COMPANIES INC increased its bottom line by earning $2.13 versus $1.68 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.64 versus $2.13).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the Specialty Retail industry average, but is less than that of the S&P 500. The net income increased by 5.9% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $289.00 million to $306.00 million.
  • Current return on equity exceeded its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a clear sign of strength within the company. Compared to other companies in the Specialty Retail industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, LOWE'S COMPANIES INC has underperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has exceeded that of the S&P 500.
  • Investors have apparently begun to recognize positive factors similar to those we have mentioned in this report, including earnings growth. This has helped drive up the company's shares by a sharp 34.76% over the past year, a rise that has exceeded that of the S&P 500 Index. Looking ahead, the stock's sharp rise over the last year has already helped drive it to a level which is relatively expensive compared to the rest of its industry. We feel, however, that other strengths this company displays justify these higher price levels.

Lowe's Companies, Inc. operates as a home improvement retailer. It offers products for maintenance, repair, remodeling, and home decorating. Lowe's Companies has a market cap of $52.7 billion and is part of the services sector and retail industry. Shares are up 1.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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MetLife Inc:

MetLife (NYSE: MET) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of B+. According to TheStreet Ratings team: The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, solid stock price performance and compelling growth in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 19.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 6.5%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • METLIFE INC 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. During the past fiscal year, METLIFE INC increased its bottom line by earning $2.91 versus $1.09 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($5.71 versus $2.91).
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 1183.33% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 41.54% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. We feel that the stock's sharp appreciation over the last year has driven it to a price level which is now somewhat expensive compared to the rest of its industry. The other strengths this company shows, however, justify the higher price levels.
  • The company, on the basis of net income growth from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed compared to the Insurance industry average, but is greater than that of the S&P 500. The net income increased by 615.0% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $127.00 million to $908.00 million.
  • The gross profit margin for METLIFE INC is currently extremely low, coming in at 8.62%. Regardless of MET's low profit margin, it has managed to increase from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 4.91% trails the industry average.

MetLife, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides insurance, annuities, and employee benefit programs in the United States, Japan, Latin America, the Middle East, Asia, and Europe. MetLife has a market cap of $58.5 billion and is part of the financial sector and insurance industry. Shares are down 3.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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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