The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

(

^DJI

) closed up 24 points (+0.2%) at 13,005. During the day, 588.6 million shares of the 30 Dow components have changed hands vs. an average daily trading volume of 818.6 million. The NYSE advances/declines ratio closed at 1,544 issues advancing vs. 1,446 declining with 127 unchanged.

The Dow component that led the way higher today was

Microsoft Corporation

(Nasdaq:

MSFT

), which sported a 52-cent gain (+1.7%) bringing the stock to $31.87. This single gain lifted the Dow Jones Industrial Average by 3.94 points or roughly accounting for 16.4% of the Dow's overall gain. Volume for Microsoft Corporation ended the day at 43.7 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 55.1 million shares.

Microsoft Corporation has a market cap of $246.19 billion and is part of the

technology

sector and

computer software & services

industry. Shares are up 21.3% year to date as of Monday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 2.5%.

Microsoft Corporation develops, licenses, and supports a range of software products and services for various computing devices worldwide. The company has a P/E ratio of 11.4, above the average computer software & services industry P/E ratio of 10.7 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7.

TheStreet Ratings rates Microsoft Corporation 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, solid stock price performance, attractive valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Holding the Dow back today was

3M

(NYSE:

MMM

), which lagged the broader Dow index with a 30-cent decline (-0.3%) bringing the stock to $87.77. Volume for 3M ended the day at 2.4 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of four million shares.

3M has a market cap of $60.22 billion and is part of the

conglomerates

sector and

conglomerates

industry. Shares are up 7.8% year to date as of Monday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 2.7%.

3M Company operates as a diversified technology company worldwide. The company has a P/E ratio of 14.8, above the average conglomerates industry P/E ratio of 14.6 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7.

TheStreet Ratings rates 3M 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, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

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