All three major indices are trading down today with the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

(

^DJI

) trading down 140 points (-0.9%) at 16,292 as of Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2016, 11:55 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 781 issues advancing vs. 2,154 declining with 147 unchanged.

The Basic Materials sector currently sits down 0.8% versus the S&P 500, which is down 1.1%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include

Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras

(

PBR.A

), down 4.1%,

China Petroleum & Chemical

(

SNP

), down 3.0%,

Southern Copper

(

SCCO

), down 2.9%,

BP

(

BP

), down 2.5% and

ConocoPhillips

(

COP

), down 1.8%. Top gainers within the sector include

Encana

(

ECA

), up 20.4%,

HollyFrontier

(

HFC

), up 6.9%,

Marathon Petroleum

(

MPC

), up 3.0% and

Valero Energy

(

VLO

), up 2.4%.

TheStreet would like to highlight 3 stocks pushing the sector lower today:

3.

Canadian Natural Resources

(

CNQ

) is one of the companies pushing the Basic Materials sector lower today. As of noon trading, Canadian Natural Resources is down $0.60 (-3.0%) to $19.40 on average volume. Thus far, 2.8 million shares of Canadian Natural Resources exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.4 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $19.04-$19.60 after having opened the day at $19.37 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $20.00.

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Canadian Natural Resources Limited acquires, explores for, develops, produces, markets, and sells crude oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids (NGLs). The company offers light and medium crude oil, primary heavy crude oil, Pelican Lake heavy crude oil, bitumen, and synthetic crude oil (SCO). Canadian Natural Resources has a market cap of $23.0 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 8.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 8 analysts that rate Canadian Natural Resources a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 1 rates it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates

Canadian Natural Resources

as a

hold

. Among the primary strengths of the company is its expanding profit margins over time. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, deteriorating net income and disappointing return on equity. Get the full

Canadian Natural Resources Ratings Report

now.

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2. As of noon trading,

Total

(

TOT

) is down $0.42 (-0.9%) to $43.38 on heavy volume. Thus far, 2.3 million shares of Total exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $42.33-$43.40 after having opened the day at $42.48 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $43.80.

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TOTAL S.A. operates as an oil and gas company worldwide. The company operates through three segments: Upstream, Refining & Chemicals, and Marketing & Services. Total has a market cap of $109.7 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 2.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 11 analysts that rate Total a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 1 rates it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates

Total

as a

hold

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and reasonable valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, generally higher debt management risk and weak operating cash flow. Get the full

Total Ratings Report

now.

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1. As of noon trading,

Royal Dutch Shell

(

RDS.B

) is down $0.74 (-1.7%) to $43.61 on average volume. Thus far, 1.7 million shares of Royal Dutch Shell exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.2 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $42.84-$43.61 after having opened the day at $42.94 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $44.35.

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Royal Dutch Shell plc operates as an independent oil and gas company worldwide. It operates through Upstream and Downstream segments. The company explores for and extracts crude oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids. Royal Dutch Shell has a market cap of $147.8 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 3.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates

Royal Dutch Shell

as a

hold

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, growth in earnings per share and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow. Get the full

Royal Dutch Shell Ratings Report

now.

EXCLUSIVE OFFER: See inside Jim Cramer's multi-million dollar charitable trust portfolio to see the stocks he thinks could be potential winners. Click here to see his holdings for 14-days FREE.

If you are interested in one of these 3 stocks, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the basic materials sector could consider

Materials Select Sector SPDR

(

XLB

) while those bearish on the basic materials sector could consider

ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd

(

SBM

).