NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The Coca-Cola Co. (KO) announced the release of its newest reduced calorie drink, Coca-Cola Life on Tuesday.
Coca-Cola shares have experienced some volatility today, starting the day up before dipping below its opening price and rising again 0.31% to $41.94 currently.
The drink differs from its Diet Coke and Coke Zero low calorie options in that it doesn't use the artificial sweetener aspartame and instead uses a blend of cane sugar and stevia leaf extract for sweetness.
The company says that Coca-Cola Life has 35% fewer calories than leading cola competitors while using natural sweeteners.
The new drink adds to the beverage company's worldwide portfolio of over 45 different stevia leaf sweetened drinks.
TheStreet Ratings team rates COCA-COLA CO as a Buy with a ratings score of B+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate COCA-COLA CO (KO) a BUY. This is driven by several positive factors, 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 expanding profit margins, reasonable valuation levels and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- The gross profit margin for COCA-COLA CO is rather high; currently it is at 65.60%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 17.65% is above that of the industry average.
- COCA-COLA CO's earnings per share declined by 11.1% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has suffered a declining pattern of earnings per share over the past year. However, we anticipate this trend reversing over the coming year. During the past fiscal year, COCA-COLA CO reported lower earnings of $1.90 versus $1.96 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.05 versus $1.90).
- KO, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 5.7%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 0.4%. The declining revenue appears to have seeped down to the company's bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
- The change in net income from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the Beverages industry average, but is less than that of the S&P 500. The net income has decreased by 13.6% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, dropping from $2,447.00 million to $2,114.00 million.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: KO Ratings Report