Best Sector in 2012: Consumer Cyclicals

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The consumer cyclical, financial services and technology sectors have been the best performs so far in 2012, according to Morningstar.

The consumer cyclical sector has a total return year to date of 17.19%. Financial services returned 16.47% while technology has a total return of 15.87%.

Some of the best-performing consumer cyclical stocks year-to-date include Tata Motors ( TTM), Magna International ( MGA) and Delphi Automotive ( DLPH).

Tata Motors

India's largest carmaker has had a 61.54% total return year to date.

"We believe that investment case for Tata Motors' Class A shares (or DVRs) has strengthened as current 48% discount to ordinary shares is close to peak since listing as well as highest compared to global companies," Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts wrote in a Feb. 28 report. "We already have a Buy on Tata Motors given its exciting business prospects, but Class-A shares seem a more attractive way to play this theme."

The one analyst who covers the company rated it hold.

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Magna International

The stock of North America's largest auto-parts supplier has returned 42.84% year to date.

Magna International has an estimated price-to-earnings ratio for next year of 9.41; the average for car parts companies is 11.78.

Eleven of the 19 analysts who cover Magna International rated it buy; eight analysts gave the stock a hold rating.

TheStreet Ratings gives Magna International a B grade with a buy rating and a $52.26 price target.


Delphi Automotive

Shares of the car parts company have returned 48.56% so far in 2012.

Shares of Delphi Automotive hit a 52-week high on Feb. 21 of $32.98. The stock's 52-week low of $19.22 was set on Nov. 23.

Delphi Automotive has a forward P/E of 7.63; the average for car parts companies is 94.7.

Eleven of the 13 analysts who cover Delphi Automotive rated it buy; two analysts gave the stock a hold rating.

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-- Written by Alexandra Zendrian

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