3 Stocks Pushing The Health Care 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 lower today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 19 points (-0.1%) at 13,006 as of Monday, Dec. 3, 2012, 11:50 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,239 issues advancing vs. 1,655 declining with 129 unchanged.

The Health Care sector currently sits down 0.4% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.1%. Top gainers within the sector include Regeneron Pharmaceuticals ( REGN), up 2.3%, Fresenius Medical Care Corporation ( FMS), up 1.2%, Valeant Pharmaceuticals International ( VRX), up 1.2%, Sanofi ( SNY), up 1.1% and Biogen Idec ( BIIB), up 1.1%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include DaVita HealthCare Partners ( DVA), down 1.0%, St Jude Medical ( STJ), down 1.2%, Express Scripts ( ESRX), down 0.9%, UnitedHealth Group ( UNH), down 0.7% and Intuitive Surgical ( ISRG), down 0.6%.

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

3. Novo Nordisk A/S ( NVO) is one of the companies pushing the Health Care sector higher today. As of noon trading, Novo Nordisk A/S is up $2.43 (1.5%) to $161.10 on light volume Thus far, 115,223 shares of Novo Nordisk A/S exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 441,800 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $160.23-$161.36 after having opened the day at $160.45 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $158.67.

Novo Nordisk A/S, a healthcare company, engages in the discovery, development, manufacture, and marketing of pharmaceutical products in Denmark and internationally. The company operates in two segments, Diabetes Care and Biopharmaceuticals. Novo Nordisk A/S has a market cap of $92.9 billion and is part of the drugs industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 4.0, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 39.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate Novo Nordisk A/S a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 1 rates it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Novo Nordisk A/S 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, notable return on equity, 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 Novo Nordisk A/S Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, GlaxoSmithKline ( GSK) is up $0.28 (0.7%) to $43.29 on average volume Thus far, 980,090 shares of GlaxoSmithKline exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.2 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $43.00-$43.34 after having opened the day at $43.01 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $43.01.

GlaxoSmithKline plc, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the discovery, development, manufacture, and marketing of pharmaceutical products, over the counter (OTC) medicines, and health-related consumer products worldwide. GlaxoSmithKline has a market cap of $109.6 billion and is part of the drugs industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.1, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 4.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate GlaxoSmithKline a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates GlaxoSmithKline as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins and increase in stock price during the past year. 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 GlaxoSmithKline Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Stryker Corporation ( SYK) is up $0.41 (0.8%) to $54.57 on average volume Thus far, 1.1 million shares of Stryker Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $54.46-$55.08 after having opened the day at $54.48 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $54.16.

Stryker Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a medical technology company. The company operates in three segments: Reconstructive, MedSurg, and Neurotechnology and Spine. Stryker Corporation has a market cap of $20.5 billion and is part of the health services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 14.5, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 8.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 13 analysts that rate Stryker Corporation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 13 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Stryker Corporation 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, increase in stock price during the past year, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results. Get the full Stryker Corporation 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 health care sector could consider Health Care Select Sector SPDR ( XLV) while those bearish on the health care sector 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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