Will This Analyst Upgrade Help JB Hunt (JBHT) Stock Today?

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Bernstein upgraded JB Hunt  (JBHT) to "outperform" from "market perform" and set a $91 price target. The firm said the company's earnings growth is accelerating.

The stock closed at $78.41 on Wednesday.

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

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Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates HUNT (JB) TRANSPRT SVCS INC as a "buy" with a ratings score of A-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate HUNT (JB) TRANSPRT SVCS INC (JBHT) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. 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:

  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 9.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 8.9%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.80, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Along with the favorable debt-to-equity ratio, the company maintains an adequate quick ratio of 1.15, which illustrates the ability to avoid short-term cash problems.
  • HUNT (JB) TRANSPRT SVCS 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, HUNT (JB) TRANSPRT SVCS INC increased its bottom line by earning $2.86 versus $2.59 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($3.16 versus $2.86).
  • 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. Compared to other companies in the Road & Rail industry and the overall market, HUNT (JB) TRANSPRT SVCS INC's return on equity significantly exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for HUNT (JB) TRANSPRT SVCS INC is currently extremely low, coming in at 14.33%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 4.88% significantly trails the industry average.
  • You can view the full analysis from the report here: JBHT 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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