5 Stocks Pushing The Health Services Industry Higher

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model

Two out of the three major indices are trading lower today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 10 points (-0.1%) at 13,082 as of Monday, Nov. 5, 2012, 1:34 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,351 issues advancing vs. 1,574 declining with 129 unchanged.

The Health Services industry currently sits up 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.1%. Top gainers within the industry include Health Net ( HNT), up 12.5%, and Boston Scientific ( BSX), up 1.7%.

TheStreet Ratings group would like to highlight 5 stocks pushing the industry higher today:

5. Varian Medical Systems ( VAR) is one of the companies pushing the Health Services industry higher today. As of noon trading, Varian Medical Systems is up $0.45 (0.6%) to $70.60 on heavy volume Thus far, 1.6 million shares of Varian Medical Systems exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 969,400 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $69.45-$71.39 after having opened the day at $69.78 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $70.15.

Varian Medical Systems, Inc. designs, manufactures, sells, and services equipment and software products for treating cancer with radiotherapy, stereotactic radiotherapy, stereotactic body radiotherapy, stereotactic radiosurgery, and brachytherapy worldwide. Varian Medical Systems has a market cap of $7.6 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.3, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 2.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 8 analysts that rate Varian Medical Systems a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Varian Medical Systems 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, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook. Get the full Varian Medical Systems Ratings Report now.

4. As of noon trading, Becton Dickinson ( BDX) is up $0.98 (1.3%) to $76.65 on light volume Thus far, 327,346 shares of Becton Dickinson exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 952,700 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $75.40-$76.66 after having opened the day at $75.41 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $75.67.

Becton, Dickinson and Company, a medical technology company, develops, manufactures, and sells medical devices, instrument systems, and reagents worldwide. The company's BD Medical segment produces medical devices that are used in various healthcare settings. Becton Dickinson has a market cap of $15.2 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.8, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 2.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 4 analysts that rate Becton Dickinson a buy, 5 analysts rate it a sell, and 8 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Becton Dickinson as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share, notable return on equity, good cash flow from operations and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full Becton Dickinson Ratings Report now.

3. As of noon trading, HCA Holdings ( HCA) is up $0.71 (2.3%) to $31.38 on heavy volume Thus far, 3.9 million shares of HCA Holdings exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $30.55-$31.45 after having opened the day at $30.60 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $30.67.

HCA Holdings, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides health care services in the United States. HCA Holdings has a market cap of $13.2 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 4.5, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 39.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 16 analysts that rate HCA Holdings a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates HCA Holdings as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its poor profit margins and feeble growth in its earnings per share. Get the full HCA Holdings Ratings Report now.

2. As of noon trading, Thermo Fisher Scientific ( TMO) is up $0.36 (0.6%) to $61.86 on light volume Thus far, 1.2 million shares of Thermo Fisher Scientific exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.8 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $61.38-$62.06 after having opened the day at $61.45 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $61.50.

Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc. provides analytical instruments, equipment, reagents and consumables, software, and services for research, manufacture, analysis, discovery, and diagnostics. Thermo Fisher Scientific has a market cap of $22.8 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 19.9, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 38.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 14 analysts that rate Thermo Fisher Scientific a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Thermo Fisher Scientific as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, increase in net income, revenue growth and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook. Get the full Thermo Fisher Scientific Ratings Report now.

1. As of noon trading, Express Scripts ( ESRX) is up $0.53 (0.8%) to $62.55 on light volume Thus far, 1.6 million shares of Express Scripts exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $61.79-$62.96 after having opened the day at $61.92 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $62.02.

Express Scripts Holding Company provides a range of pharmacy benefit management (PBM) services in North America. Express Scripts has a market cap of $50.7 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 32.6, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 39.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 18 analysts that rate Express Scripts a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Express Scripts as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, good cash flow from operations, solid stock price performance and reasonable valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full Express Scripts Ratings Report now.

If you are interested in one of these 5 stocks, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the health services industry could consider Health Care Select Sector SPDR ( XLV) while those bearish on the health services industry could consider ProShares Ultra Short Health Care ( RXD).

A reminder about TheStreet Ratings group: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

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