3 Stocks Pushing The Financial 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 17 points (-0.1%) at 12,949 as of Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012, 11:49 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,707 issues advancing vs. 1,183 declining with 148 unchanged.

The Financial sector currently sits down 0.1% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.0%. Top gainers within the sector include Royal Bank of Scotland Group (The ( RBS), up 3.2%, Icahn ( IEP), up 2.6%, Lloyds Banking Group ( LYG), up 2.4%, Woori Finance Holdings ( WF), up 2.0% and Deutsche Bank ( DB), up 1.2%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include National Bank of Greece ( NBG), down 8.3%, Zions ( ZION), down 3.2%, Public Storage ( PSA), down 2.1%, Capital One Financial ( COF), down 2.0% and KeyCorp ( KEY), down 1.8%.

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

3. Credit Suisse Group ( CS) is one of the companies pushing the Financial sector higher today. As of noon trading, Credit Suisse Group is up $0.15 (0.7%) to $23.11 on light volume Thus far, 425,705 shares of Credit Suisse Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.3 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $22.89-$23.15 after having opened the day at $22.94 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $22.96.

Credit Suisse Group AG, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a financial services company. The company operates in three segments: Private Banking, Investment Banking, and Asset Management. Credit Suisse Group has a market cap of $29.9 billion and is part of the banking industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 9.5, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 1.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate Credit Suisse Group a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 1 rates it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Credit Suisse Group as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow, relatively poor performance when compared with the S&P 500 during the past year and feeble growth in its earnings per share. Get the full Credit Suisse Group Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, AvalonBay Communities ( AVB) is up $3.76 (2.9%) to $132.71 on heavy volume Thus far, 1.2 million shares of AvalonBay Communities exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 605,100 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $126.89-$133.82 after having opened the day at $127.00 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $128.95.

AvalonBay Communities, Inc. engages in the development, redevelopment, acquisition, ownership, and operation of multifamily communities in the United States. AvalonBay Communities has a market cap of $12.6 billion and is part of the real estate industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 47.4, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 1.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 9 analysts that rate AvalonBay Communities a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates AvalonBay Communities as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, 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. Get the full AvalonBay Communities Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Equity Residential ( EQR) is up $1.32 (2.4%) to $55.75 on heavy volume Thus far, 1.8 million shares of Equity Residential exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $53.25-$56.11 after having opened the day at $53.50 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $54.43.

Equity Residential, a real estate investment trust (REIT), engages in the acquisition, development, and management of multifamily properties in the United States. Equity Residential has a market cap of $16.5 billion and is part of the real estate industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 81.3, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 4.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 5 analysts that rate Equity Residential a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Equity Residential as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, increase in net income, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself. Get the full Equity Residential Ratings Report now.

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If you are interested in one of these 3 stocks, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the financial sector could consider Financial Select Sector SPDR ( XLF) while those bearish on the financial sector could consider Proshares Short Financials ( SEF).

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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