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.

One out of the three major indices traded up today Two out of the three major indices traded up today The three major indices are trading lower today with the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

(

^DJI

) trading down 5.88 points (0.0%) at 16,315 as of Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2014, 4:20 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,884 issues advancing vs. 1,209 declining with 128 unchanged.

The Consumer Non-Durables industry as a whole closed the day up 0.4% versus the S&P 500, which was up 0.2%. Top gainers within the Consumer Non-Durables industry included

Forward Industries

(

FORD

), up 1.6%,

Ever-Glory International Group

(

EVK

), up 2.7%,

Tandy Leather Factory

(

TLF

), up 1.7%,

United-Guardian

(

UG

), up 5.5% and

STR Holdings

(

STRI

), up 3.1%.

TheStreet Ratings Group would like to highlight 3 stocks pushing the industry higher today:

STR Holdings

(

STRI

) is one of the companies that pushed the Consumer Non-Durables industry higher today. STR Holdings was up $0.04 (3.1%) to $1.32 on light volume. Throughout the day, 67,304 shares of STR Holdings exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 124,300 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $1.22-$1.34 after having opened the day at $1.34 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $1.28.

STR Holdings, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, and sells encapsulants for solar module manufacturers worldwide. Its encapsulants protect the embedded semiconductor circuits of solar panels. STR Holdings has a market cap of $34.3 million and is part of the consumer goods sector. Shares are down 18.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there is 1 analyst who rates STR Holdings a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

TheStreet Ratings rates STR Holdings as a

sell

. Among the areas we feel are negative, one of the most important has been a generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on STRI go as follows:

  • STRI's stock share price has done very poorly compared to where it was a year ago: Despite any rallies, the net result is that it is down by 37.86%, which is also worse that the performance of the S&P 500 Index. Investors have so far failed to pay much attention to the earnings improvements the company has managed to achieve over the last quarter. Naturally, the overall market trend is bound to be a significant factor. However, in one sense, the stock's sharp decline last year is a positive for future investors, making it cheaper (in proportion to its earnings over the past year) than most other stocks in its industry. But due to other concerns, we feel the stock is still not a good buy right now.
  • 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, STR HOLDINGS INC's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly increased by 95.66% to -$0.21 million when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, STR HOLDINGS INC has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 7.58%.
  • STRI has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, which we consider to be a relatively favorable sign. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 4.47, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • STR HOLDINGS INC has improved earnings per share by 45.5% 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. This trend suggests that the performance of the business is improving. During the past fiscal year, STR HOLDINGS INC continued to lose money by earning -$0.44 versus -$5.12 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings (-$0.41 versus -$0.44).

You can view the full analysis from the report here:

STR Holdings Ratings Report

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

At the close,

United-Guardian

(

UG

) was up $1.20 (5.5%) to $22.89 on light volume. Throughout the day, 3,279 shares of United-Guardian exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 6,500 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $21.58-$23.00 after having opened the day at $21.86 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $21.69.

United-Guardian, Inc. researches, develops, manufactures, and markets cosmetic ingredients, personal care products, pharmaceuticals, medical and health care products, and specialty industrial products in the United States, Canada, China, France, and internationally. United-Guardian has a market cap of $100.2 million and is part of the consumer goods sector. Shares are down 23.0% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are no analysts who rate United-Guardian a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

TheStreet Ratings rates

United-Guardian

as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on UG go as follows:

  • UG has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, which we consider to be a relatively favorable sign. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 10.25, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • The gross profit margin for UNITED-GUARDIAN INC is rather high; currently it is at 64.48%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 30.22% significantly outperformed against the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has slightly increased to $1.59 million or 2.77% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow, UNITED-GUARDIAN INC's average is still marginally south of the industry average growth rate of 10.03%.
  • UNITED-GUARDIAN INC's earnings per share declined by 31.0% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has not demonstrated a clear trend in earnings over the past 2 years, making it difficult to accurately predict earnings for the coming year. During the past fiscal year, UNITED-GUARDIAN INC increased its bottom line by earning $1.28 versus $1.05 in the prior year.
  • UG, with its decline in revenue, underperformed when compared the industry average of 9.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues fell by 17.9%. The declining revenue appears to have seeped down to the company's bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.

You can view the full analysis from the report here:

United-Guardian Ratings Report

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

Tandy Leather Factory

(

TLF

) was another company that pushed the Consumer Non-Durables industry higher today. Tandy Leather Factory was up $0.16 (1.7%) to $9.69 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1,049 shares of Tandy Leather Factory exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 11,600 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $9.54-$9.69 after having opened the day at $9.58 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $9.53.

Tandy Leather Factory, Inc. is engaged in the retail and wholesale distribution of leather and related products. It operates through three segments: Wholesale Leathercraft, Retail Leathercraft, and International Leathercraft. Tandy Leather Factory has a market cap of $99.2 million and is part of the consumer goods sector. Shares are down 2.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are no analysts who rate Tandy Leather Factory a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates

Tandy Leather Factory

as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on TLF go as follows:

  • TLF's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 0.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 3.9%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • The stock has not only risen over the past year, it has done so at a faster pace than the S&P 500, reflecting the earnings growth and other positive factors similar to those we have cited here. Turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, it goes without saying that even the best stocks can fall in an overall down market. However, in any other environment, this stock still has good upside potential despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year.
  • TANDY LEATHER FACTORY INC has improved earnings per share by 6.3% 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. During the past fiscal year, TANDY LEATHER FACTORY INC increased its bottom line by earning $0.71 versus $0.55 in the prior year.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Specialty Retail industry average. The net income increased by 8.3% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from $1.63 million to $1.77 million.
  • The gross profit margin for TANDY LEATHER FACTORY INC is rather high; currently it is at 66.73%. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 8.96% is above that of the industry average.

You can view the full analysis from the report here:

Tandy Leather Factory Ratings Report

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

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.