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5 Basic Materials Stocks Moving The Sector Upward

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.

All three major indices are trading up today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 108 points (0.7%) at 14,942 as of Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2013, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 2,111 issues advancing vs. 816 declining with 96 unchanged.

The Basic Materials sector currently sits up 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which is up 1.3%. Top gainers within the sector include Phillips 66 ( PSX), up 1.8%, ConocoPhillips ( COP), up 1.7%, E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company ( DD), up 1.7%, ArcelorMittal ( MT), up 1.7% and Marathon Oil ( MRO), up 1.6%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Kinder Morgan ( KMI), down 4.5%, Kinder Morgan Energy Partners ( KMP), down 2.2% and Southern Copper Corporation ( SCCO), down 1.4%.

TheStreet would like to highlight 5 stocks pushing the sector higher today:

5. Monsanto Company ( MON) is one of the companies pushing the Basic Materials sector higher today. As of noon trading, Monsanto Company is up $1.24 (1.2%) to $100.42 on average volume. Thus far, 1.3 million shares of Monsanto Company exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.0 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $98.84-$100.46 after having opened the day at $99.13 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $99.18.

Monsanto Company, together with its subsidiaries, provides agricultural products for farmers worldwide. It operates in two segments, Seeds and Genomics, and Agricultural Productivity. Monsanto Company has a market cap of $52.2 billion and is part of the chemicals industry. Shares are up 4.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate Monsanto Company a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Monsanto Company as a buy. 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, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins and reasonable valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full Monsanto Company Ratings Report now.

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

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