3 Stocks Reiterated As A Buy: MDLZ, MU, MRK

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 Monday 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:

Mondelez International Inc:

Mondelez International (Nasdaq: MDLZ) 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 growth in earnings per share, good cash flow from operations, increase in net income, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and expanding profit margins. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • MONDELEZ INTERNATIONAL INC has improved earnings per share by 9.1% 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 year. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, MONDELEZ INTERNATIONAL INC increased its bottom line by earning $1.28 versus $0.87 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($1.69 versus $1.28).
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $945.00 million or 17.68% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of 0.95%.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the S&P 500, but is less than that of the Food Products industry average. The net income increased by 3.5% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $601.00 million to $622.00 million.
  • The current debt-to-equity ratio, 0.57, is low and is below the industry average, implying that there has been successful management of debt levels. Despite the fact that MDLZ's debt-to-equity ratio is low, the quick ratio, which is currently 0.51, displays a potential problem in covering short-term cash needs.
  • 39.43% is the gross profit margin for MONDELEZ INTERNATIONAL INC which we consider to be strong. Regardless of MDLZ's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 7.37% trails the industry average.

Mondelez International, Inc., through its subsidiaries, manufactures and markets snack food and beverage products worldwide. Mondelez International has a market cap of $60.4 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector and food & beverage industry. Shares are up 1.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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Micron Technology Inc:

Micron Technology (Nasdaq: MU) 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 robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and notable return on equity. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • MU's very impressive revenue growth greatly exceeded the industry average of 10.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues leaped by 71.8%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 1600.00% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 88.07% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Regarding the stock's future course, although almost any stock can fall in a broad market decline, MU should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed a very nice gain in the past year.
  • MICRON TECHNOLOGY INC reported significant earnings per share improvement 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, MICRON TECHNOLOGY INC turned its bottom line around by earning $1.00 versus -$1.04 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($3.21 versus $1.00).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Semiconductors & Semiconductor Equipment industry. The net income increased by 1774.4% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $43.00 million to $806.00 million.
  • The company's current return on equity greatly increased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of significant strength within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Semiconductors & Semiconductor Equipment industry and the overall market, MICRON TECHNOLOGY INC's return on equity significantly exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

Micron Technology, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, manufactures and markets semiconductor solutions worldwide. Micron Technology has a market cap of $34.8 billion and is part of the technology sector and electronics industry. Shares are up 45.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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Merck & Co Inc:

Merck (NYSE: MRK) 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 solid stock price performance, increase in net income, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, reasonable valuation levels and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

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Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • Looking at where the stock is today compared to one year ago, we find that it is not only higher, but it has also clearly outperformed the rise in the S&P 500 over the same period. Although other factors naturally played a role, the company's strong earnings growth was key. Looking ahead, unless broad bear market conditions prevail, we still see more upside potential for this stock, despite the fact that it has already risen over the past year.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Pharmaceuticals industry. The net income increased by 121.2% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $906.00 million to $2,004.00 million.
  • 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. Along with the favorable debt-to-equity ratio, the company maintains an adequate quick ratio of 1.14, which illustrates the ability to avoid short-term cash problems.
  • MERCK & CO reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to 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, MERCK & CO reported lower earnings of $1.46 versus $2.00 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($3.50 versus $1.46).

Merck & Co., Inc. provides various health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, animal health, and consumer care products worldwide. Merck has a market cap of $174.0 billion and is part of the health care sector and drugs industry. Shares are up 20.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday.

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