5 Stocks Pushing The Basic Materials Sector 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 up today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 9 points (-0.1%) at 12,786 as of Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012, 11:49 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,471 issues advancing vs. 1,424 declining with 128 unchanged.

The Basic Materials sector currently sits down 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.0%. Top gainers within the sector include Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold ( FCX), up 1.2%, Valero Energy Corporation ( VLO), up 1.2%, Noble Energy ( NBL), up 1.3%, Tenaris ( TS), up 1.0% and Southern Copper Corporation ( SCCO), up 0.7%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Cliffs Natural Resources ( CLF), down 8.3%, Cenovus Energy ( CVE), down 1.8%, PetroChina ( PTR), down 1.6%, EOG Resources ( EOG), down 1.6% and Devon Energy ( DVN), down 1.2%.

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

5. Mosaic ( MOS) is one of the companies pushing the Basic Materials sector higher today. As of noon trading, Mosaic is up $0.97 (1.9%) to $52.17 on average volume Thus far, 1.4 million shares of Mosaic exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $50.64-$52.22 after having opened the day at $51.02 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $51.20.

The Mosaic Company produces and markets concentrated phosphate and potash crop nutrients for the agriculture industry worldwide. Mosaic has a market cap of $14.7 billion and is part of the chemicals industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 12.3, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 5.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate Mosaic a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Mosaic as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow. Get the full Mosaic Ratings Report now.

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