3 Stocks Pushing The Food & Beverage 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

All three major indices are trading down today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 27 points (-0.2%) at 12,904 as of Thursday, Nov. 8, 2012, 11:49 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,218 issues advancing vs. 1,656 declining with 135 unchanged.

The Food & Beverage industry currently sits down 0.3% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.2%.

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

3. Hershey Company ( HSY) is one of the companies pushing the Food & Beverage industry higher today. As of noon trading, Hershey Company is up $0.74 (1.1%) to $70.33 on average volume Thus far, 346,237 shares of Hershey Company exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 830,500 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $69.24-$70.39 after having opened the day at $69.43 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $69.59.

The Hershey Company, together with its subsidiaries, engages in manufacturing, marketing, selling, and distributing various chocolate and confectionery products, pantry items, and gum and mint refreshment products worldwide. Hershey Company has a market cap of $11.5 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 21.6, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 12.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 4 analysts that rate Hershey Company a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Hershey Company as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full Hershey Company Ratings Report now.

2. As of noon trading, Campbell Soup ( CPB) is up $0.29 (0.8%) to $35.50 on average volume Thus far, 915,283 shares of Campbell Soup exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.9 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $35.14-$35.66 after having opened the day at $35.14 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $35.21.

Campbell Soup Company, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the manufacture and marketing of branded convenience food products worldwide. Campbell Soup has a market cap of $11.1 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 14.6, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 5.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there is 1 analyst that rates Campbell Soup a buy, 3 analysts rate it a sell, and 14 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Campbell Soup as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity, reasonable valuation levels, increase in net income and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated. Get the full Campbell Soup Ratings Report now.

1. As of noon trading, Dean Foods Company ( DF) is up $0.62 (3.9%) to $16.70 on heavy volume Thus far, 4.0 million shares of Dean Foods Company exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $16.54-$17.30 after having opened the day at $17.15 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $16.08.

Dean Foods Company operates as a food and beverage company in the United States. The company operates in three segments: Fresh Dairy Direct, WhiteWave-Alpro, and Morningstar. Dean Foods Company has a market cap of $3.0 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of -2.1, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 46.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 4 analysts that rate Dean Foods Company a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Dean Foods Company as a sell. Among the areas we feel are negative, one of the most important has been poor profit margins. Get the full Dean Foods Company Ratings Report now.

If you are interested in one of these 3 stocks, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the food & beverage industry could consider PowerShares Dynamic Food & Beverage ( PBJ) while those bearish on the food & beverage industry could consider PowerShares DB Agriculture Sht ETN ( ADZ).

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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