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Verisk (VRSK) Riding on Growth Strategies, Debt Woes Stay

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Verisk Analytics, Inc. (VRSK - Free Report) is currently benefiting from organic growth and product development.

The company recently reported mixed first-quarter 2022 results, wherein its earnings missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate but revenues surpassed the same. Adjusted earnings per share (excluding $1.79 from non-recurring items) of $1.34 missed the consensus mark by 3.6% but grew 8.9% on a year-over-year basis. Revenues of $775.5 million beat the consensus estimate by 0.7% and increased 6.8% year over year on a reported basis and 5.3% on an organic constant-currency (cc) basis.

How is Verisk Doing?

Verisk remains focused on organic growth, product development and acquisitions. The company continues to invest in people, data sets, analytic solutions, technology and complementary businesses with a view to keep itself updated with changing requirements in the markets it serves. The company is maintaining its focus on increasing solution penetration with customers, developing a new proprietary database and predictive analytics, and expanding into new customer sectors.

Verisk has developed several advantages for itself that help strengthen its client base and fend off competition. Using advanced technologies to collect and analyze data, Verisk draws on its unique data assets and deep-domain expertise to provide predictive analytics and decision-support solutions that are integrated into customer workflows. Specialized and in-depth knowledge in markets such as energy, insurance, financial services and risk management adds value to its analytics. Steady stream of first-to-market innovations and the ability to deeply integrate into customer workflows have allowed the company to strengthen its client base over time. All these initiatives augur well for long-term growth and stability of the company.

Verisk’s current ratio at the end of first quarter was pegged at 0.47, lower than the current ratio of 0.64 reported at the end of the prior-year quarter. Decreasing current ratio is not desirable as it indicates that the company may have problems meeting its short-term obligations.

Verisk has more current debt outstanding than cash. Cash and cash equivalents balance of $398 million at the end of the first quarter was well below its current debt of $1.3 billion.

The stock has lost 17.4% over the past month compared with 11.9% decline of the industry it belongs to.

Zacks Rank and Stocks to Consider

Verisk currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks the broader Business Services sector that investors can consider are Cross Country Healthcare (CCRN - Free Report) , Gartner (IT - Free Report) and Clean Harbors (CLH - Free Report) .

Cross Country Healthcare and Gartner sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) while Clean Harbors carries a Zack Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Cross Country Healthcare has an expected earnings growth rate of 49.4% for the current year. It has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 29.2%, on average.

CCRN has a long-term earnings growth rate of 6.9%. Shares have surged 3.4% in the past year.

Gartner’s shares have surged 8.7% in the past year. The company delivered a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 24.2%, on average.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for IT’s earnings in the current year has moved up 8.6% in the past 30 days.

Clean Harbors has an expected earnings growth rate of 26.1% for the current year. The company has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 35.8%, on average.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for CLH’s earnings in the current year has moved up 7.7% in the past 30 days. The stock declined 1.4% in the past year.