NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- AT&T (T) shares are up slightly in extended trading on news that the FCC has approved its acquisition of fellow telecom company Leap Wireless (LEAP).
Despite the fact that regulators were leery of allowing industry leaders AT&T and Verizon (VZ) increase their share of low frequency mobile spectrum -- which Leap Wireless represents -- the deal went through. Analysts point to the fact that T-Mobile (TMUS) and Sprint (S) both own sizable shares of the high frequency spectrum to counter that argument.
Leap shareholders have already approved the deal and will receive $15 per share, which values the company and its low frequency spectrum at $1.2 billion. Leap Wireless' Cricket Mobile brand will replace AT&T's own Aio prepaid brand.
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TheStreet Ratings team rates AT&T INC as a Buy with a ratings score of B. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate AT&T INC (T) a BUY. This is driven by a few notable strengths, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, compelling growth in net income, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- T's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 2.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 1.8%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
- 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 Diversified Telecommunication Services industry and the overall market, AT&T INC's return on equity exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
- The gross profit margin for AT&T INC is rather high; currently it is at 63.10%. It has increased significantly from the same period last year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 20.84% is above that of the industry average.
- The company, on the basis of net income growth from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly outperformed against the S&P 500 and exceeded that of the Diversified Telecommunication Services industry average. The net income increased by 279.2% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$3,857.00 million to $6,913.00 million.
- The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.82, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Even though the company has a strong debt-to-equity ratio, the quick ratio of 0.47 is very weak and demonstrates a lack of ability to pay short-term obligations.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: T Ratings Report