3 Stocks Reiterated As A Buy: MSFT, GS, GM

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.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- TheStreet Ratings team reiterated 3 stocks with a buy rating on Friday based on 32 different data factors including general market action, fundamental analysis and technical indicators. The in-depth analysis of these ratings decisions goes as follows:

Microsoft Corp:

Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of A-. According to TheStreet Ratings team: 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, solid stock price performance, reasonable valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • MSFT's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 11.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 15.6%. 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.
  • MSFT'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. To add to this, MSFT has a quick ratio of 2.31, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • Compared to its closing price of one year ago, MSFT's share price has jumped by 35.55%, exceeding the performance of the broader market during that same time frame. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, MSFT should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 61.17% to $9,514.00 million when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of 39.78%.

Microsoft Corporation develops, licenses, and supports software, services, and hardware devices. Its Windows division offers Windows operating system; Windows Services suite of applications and Web services, including Outlook.com and SkyDrive; Surface RT and Pro devices; and PC accessories. Microsoft has a market cap of $352.2 billion and is part of the technology sector and computer software & services industry. Shares are up 15.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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Goldman Sachs Group Inc:

Goldman Sachs Group (NYSE: GS) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of B+. According to TheStreet Ratings team: The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, attractive valuation levels, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • GS's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 2.9%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 2.4%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP INC has improved earnings per share by 10.8% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP INC increased its bottom line by earning $15.47 versus $14.15 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($16.80 versus $15.47).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Capital Markets industry average. The net income increased by 5.5% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $1,931.00 million to $2,037.00 million.
  • The stock price has risen over the past year, but, despite its earnings growth and some other positive factors, it has underperformed the S&P 500 so far. Turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, it goes without saying that even the best stocks can fall in an overall down market. However, in any other environment, this stock still has good upside potential despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year.

The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. provides investment banking, securities, and investment management services to corporations, financial institutions, governments, and high-net-worth individuals worldwide. Goldman Sachs Group has a market cap of $75.9 billion and is part of the financial sector and financial services industry. Shares are down 4.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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General Motors Co:

General Motors (NYSE: GM) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of B. According to TheStreet Ratings team: The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • GM's revenue growth trails the industry average of 19.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 1.5%. 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 0.95, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Although the company had a strong debt-to-equity ratio, its quick ratio of 0.81 is somewhat weak and could be cause for future problems.
  • GENERAL MOTORS CO 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. 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, GENERAL MOTORS CO reported lower earnings of $2.35 versus $2.93 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.71 versus $2.35).
  • 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 Automobiles industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 80.3% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $1,414.00 million to $278.00 million.
  • The share price of GENERAL MOTORS CO has not done very well: it is down 5.72% and has underperformed the S&P 500, in part reflecting the company's sharply declining earnings per share when compared to the year-earlier quarter. Despite the stock's decline during the last year, it is still somewhat more expensive (in proportion to its earnings over the last year) than most other stocks in its industry. We feel, however, that other strengths this company displays offset this slight negative.

General Motors Company (GM) designs, manufactures, and markets cars, crossovers, trucks, and automobile parts worldwide. General has a market cap of $53.6 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector and automotive industry. Shares are down 19% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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