Dow Today: Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) Leads The Day Higher, McDonald's Corporation (MCD) Lags

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) is trading up 47 points (+0.4%) at 12,788 as of Tuesday, Jun 19, 2012, 9:35 a.m. ET. During this time, 30.1 million shares of the 30 Dow components have changed hands vs. an average daily trading volume of 712.7 million. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 2,128 issues advancing vs. 446 declining with 170 unchanged.

The Dow component leading the way higher looks to be Microsoft Corporation (Nasdaq: MSFT), which is sporting a 62-cent gain (+2.1%) bringing the stock to $30.46. This single gain is lifting the Dow Jones Industrial Average by 4.69 points or roughly accounting for 10% of the Dow's overall gain. Volume for Microsoft Corporation currently sits at 5.1 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 44.8 million shares.

Microsoft Corporation has a market cap of $252.19 billion and is part of the technology sector and computer software & services industry. Shares are up 14.9% year to date as of Monday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 2.8%.

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, equal to the average computer software & services industry P/E ratio 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, attractive valuation levels, expanding profit margins 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 back the Dow today is McDonald's Corporation (NYSE: MCD), which is lagging the broader Dow index with a 28-cent decline (-0.3%) bringing the stock to $89.96. Volume for McDonald's Corporation currently sits at 422,002 shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 6.5 million shares.

McDonald's Corporation has a market cap of $91.97 billion and is part of the services sector and leisure industry. Shares are down 9.8% year to date as of Monday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 3.1%.

McDonald's Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, franchises and operates McDonald's restaurants primarily in the United States, Europe, the Asia Pacific, the Middle East, and Africa. The company has a P/E ratio of 16.9, equal to the average leisure industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7.

TheStreet Ratings rates McDonald's Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, revenue growth, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook.
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