Will This Upgrade Help Matson (MATX) Stock Today?

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Matson (MATX) stock has been upgraded to "outperform" from "market perform," FBR Capital Markets said Monday. The firm said the revision was a valuation call based on a $30 price target. 

TheStreet Ratings team rates MATSON INC as a Hold with a ratings score of C. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate MATSON INC (MATX) a HOLD. The primary factors that have impacted our rating are mixed ? some indicating strength, some showing weaknesses, with little evidence to justify the expectation of either a positive or negative performance for this stock relative to most other stocks. The company's strongest point has been its very decent return on equity which we feel should persist. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, deteriorating net income and generally higher debt management risk."

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

  • MATSON INC has experienced a steep decline in earnings per share in the most recent quarter in comparison to its performance from 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, MATSON INC increased its bottom line by earning $1.25 versus $1.23 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.33 versus $1.25).
  • MATX, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 3.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 0.6%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • 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 Marine industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, MATSON INC has outperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio of 1.14 is relatively high when compared with the industry average, suggesting a need for better debt level management.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Marine industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 62.6% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $9.10 million to $3.40 million.

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