Why KeyCorp (KEY) Stock Is Up Today

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- KeyCorp (KEY) was gaining 0.8% to $13.62 Thursday after beating analysts' estimates for earnings in the first quarter.

For the first quarter KeyCorp posted earnings of 26 cents a share, beating the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of 24 cents by 2 cents. Revenue fell 1% from the year-ago quarter to $1 billion, compared to the consensus of $1.01 billion.

Adjusted average loans grew 5.5% in the quarter, with 8.9% growth in commercial, financial, and ag loans. Average deposits increase by 3.3%.

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TheStreet Ratings team rates KEYCORP as a Buy with a ratings score of B. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate KEYCORP (KEY) a BUY. This is driven by a number of 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 growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, expanding profit margins, solid stock price performance and attractive valuation levels. 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:

  • KEYCORP has improved earnings per share by 30.0% 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, KEYCORP increased its bottom line by earning $0.93 versus $0.85 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.02 versus $0.93).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the Commercial Banks industry average, but is less than that of the S&P 500. The net income increased by 13.3% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $203.00 million to $230.00 million.
  • The gross profit margin for KEYCORP is currently very high, coming in at 92.29%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 20.87% is above that of the industry average.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 30.00% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 34.59% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. 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.
  • Regardless of the drop in revenue, the company managed to outperform against the industry average of 12.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 2.2%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: KEY Ratings Report

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

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.

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