Why Pfizer (PFE) Stock is Up Today (Update)

Update (4:28 p.m.): Updated with Monday market close information and Financial Times report.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Pfizer  (PFE) rose Monday after AstraZeneca  (AZN) rejected what the U.S. pharmaceutical company said was its final increased offer to purchase the British company.

Pfizer offered $120 billion, or $92.51 a share, on Sunday after AstraZeneca turned down each previous takeover proposal. AstraZeneca said Sunday it made clear to Pfizer that the U.S. company would have to make an offer at least 10% greater than the approximately $90 a share it proposed on Friday, according to The Wall Street Journal.

This would mandate an offer of approximately $99, but Pfizer came back a few hours later with its allegedly final offer of $92.51, which could mark the end of the potential transatlantic merger; however, Financial Times reported Monday that sources close to Pfizer indicate the company still wants to try to strike a deal with AstraZeneca before the May 26 deadline, though U.K. takeover rules limit Pfizer's options.

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The stock closed up 0.55% to $29.28.

Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates PFIZER INC as a "buy" with a ratings score of B+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate PFIZER INC (PFE) 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 largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, reasonable valuation levels, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income."

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

  • The current debt-to-equity ratio, 0.48, is low and is below the industry average, implying that there has been successful management of debt levels. To add to this, PFE has a quick ratio of 1.75, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $2,935.00 million or 30.96% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of 10.24%.
  • PFIZER INC' earnings per share from the most recent quarter came in slightly below the year earlier quarter. 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, PFIZER INC increased its bottom line by earning $1.65 versus $1.20 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.24 versus $1.65).
  • The gross profit margin for PFIZER INC is currently very high, coming in at 86.04%. Regardless of PFE's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, PFE's net profit margin of 20.61% compares favorably to the industry average.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: PFE 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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