NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of ITT Educational Services Inc. (ESI) have plunged 23.88% to $19.64 after the for-profit provider of post secondary degree programs in the U.S. reported that new student enrollment in the first quarter of 2014 declined 3.8% to 16,746, compared to 17,412 in the same period in 2013.
Total student enrollment dropped 6.4% to 57,125 as of March 31, 2014 compared to 61,039 as of March 31, 2013.
Also, the company said that due to the uncertainties related to the accounting treatment of the PEAKS Trust and the company's guarantee obligations under the PEAKS Program, it's withdrawing its previously-disclosed internal goals for the 12 months ending December 31, 2014, and investors should not rely on those internal goals.
TheStreet Ratings team rates ITT EDUCATIONAL SERVICES INC as a Hold with a ratings score of C-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate ITT EDUCATIONAL SERVICES INC (ESI) 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 strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its reasonable valuation levels, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, weak operating cash flow and feeble growth in the company's earnings per share."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- ESI's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.25 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. Although the company had a strong debt-to-equity ratio, its quick ratio of 0.92 is somewhat weak and could be cause for future problems.
- The gross profit margin for ITT EDUCATIONAL SERVICES INC is rather high; currently it is at 56.38%. Regardless of ESI's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, ESI's net profit margin of -4.39% significantly underperformed when compared to the industry average.
- 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 Diversified Consumer Services industry. The net income has decreased by 21.9% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, dropping from -$9.47 million to -$11.55 million.
- Net operating cash flow has decreased to $60.96 million or 29.60% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: ESI Ratings Report