5 Stocks Pushing The Basic Materials Sector Lower

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

One 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%. 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%. 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%.

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

5. Apache Corporation ( APA) is one of the companies pushing the Basic Materials sector lower today. As of noon trading, Apache Corporation is down $0.64 (-0.8%) to $76.46 on average volume Thus far, 1.1 million shares of Apache Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.8 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $76.38-$77.28 after having opened the day at $77.00 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $77.10.

Apache Corporation, an independent energy company, explores for, develops, and produces natural gas, crude oil, and natural gas liquids. Apache Corporation has a market cap of $29.5 billion and is part of the energy industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 12.0, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 14.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 19 analysts that rate Apache Corporation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Apache Corporation as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its reasonable valuation levels and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow. Get the full Apache Corporation Ratings Report now.

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