Will This Upgrade Help TECO Energy (TE) Stock Today?

Story updated at 9:55 a.m. to reflect market activity.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- TECO Energy (TE) was upgraded to "neutral" from "sell" by UBS UBS Wednesday.

TECO Energy gained 1.3% to $18.14 in morning trading.

The firm set a price target of $17 for the electricity provider. UBS analysts said the upgrade was driven by group recovery, deal savings, and a better coal outlook for TECO Energy.

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Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates TECO ENERGY INC as a Buy with a ratings score of B. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate TECO ENERGY INC (TE) a BUY. This is driven by some important positives, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. Among the primary strengths of the company is its generally strong cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself."

Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:

  • Net operating cash flow has slightly increased to $152.50 million or 2.28% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, TECO ENERGY INC has also modestly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -2.81%.
  • Despite the stagnant revenue growth, the company outperformed against the industry average of 2.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues have remained constant. Even though the company's revenue remained stagnant, the earnings per share decreased.
  • TECO ENERGY INC' earnings per share from the most recent quarter came in slightly below the year earlier quarter. The company has suffered a declining pattern of earnings per share over the past two years. However, we anticipate this trend to reverse over the coming year. During the past fiscal year, TECO ENERGY INC reported lower earnings of $0.92 versus $1.13 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.01 versus $0.92).
  • Even though the current debt-to-equity ratio is 1.29, it is still below the industry average, suggesting that this level of debt is acceptable within the Multi-Utilities industry. Despite the fact that TE's debt-to-equity ratio is mixed in its results, the company's quick ratio of 0.56 is low and demonstrates weak liquidity.
  • The company's current return on equity has slightly decreased from the same quarter one year prior. This implies a minor weakness in the organization. When compared to other companies in the Multi-Utilities industry and the overall market, TECO ENERGY INC's return on equity is below that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: TE Ratings Report

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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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