5 Stocks Pushing The Materials & Construction 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

Two out of the three major indices are trading lower today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 15 points (0.1%) at 12,980 as of Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2012, 11:49 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,319 issues advancing vs. 1,553 declining with 162 unchanged.

The Materials & Construction industry currently is unchanged today versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.1%. A company within the industry that increased today was Foster Wheeler ( FWLT), up 2.3%.

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

5. Vulcan Materials Company ( VMC) is one of the companies pushing the Materials & Construction industry higher today. As of noon trading, Vulcan Materials Company is up $0.40 (0.8%) to $52.71 on light volume Thus far, 203,420 shares of Vulcan Materials Company exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 699,800 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $52.12-$53.10 after having opened the day at $52.38 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $52.31.

Vulcan Materials Company engages in the production and sale of construction aggregates, as well as asphalt mix, ready-mixed concrete, and cement primarily in the United States. The company operates in four segments: Aggregates, Concrete, Asphalt Mix, and Cement. Vulcan Materials Company has a market cap of $6.8 billion and is part of the industrial goods sector. Shares are up 34.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 4 analysts that rate Vulcan Materials Company a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 8 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Vulcan Materials Company as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income, weak operating cash flow and poor profit margins. Get the full Vulcan Materials Company Ratings Report now.

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4. As of noon trading, Eagle Materials ( EXP) is up $0.79 (1.5%) to $53.96 on light volume Thus far, 221,353 shares of Eagle Materials exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 696,000 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $53.00-$54.27 after having opened the day at $53.56 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $53.17.

Eagle Materials Inc. manufactures and distributes building products used in residential, industrial, commercial, and infrastructure construction in the United States. The company operates in four segments: Cement, Gypsum Wallboard, Recycled Paperboard, and Concrete and Aggregates. Eagle Materials has a market cap of $2.6 billion and is part of the industrial goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 54.3, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 107.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are no analysts that rate Eagle Materials a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 9 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Eagle Materials 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, compelling growth in net income, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins. Get the full Eagle Materials Ratings Report now.

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3. As of noon trading, Republic Services ( RSG) is up $0.17 (0.6%) to $28.58 on light volume Thus far, 441,386 shares of Republic Services exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.4 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $28.37-$28.69 after having opened the day at $28.40 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $28.41.

Republic Services, Inc. provides non-hazardous solid waste collection, transfer, and disposal services for commercial, industrial, municipal, and residential customers in the United States and Puerto Rico. Republic Services has a market cap of $10.4 billion and is part of the industrial goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 16.6, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 3.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate Republic Services a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Republic Services as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its reasonable valuation levels, increase in stock price during the past year, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, expanding profit margins and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow. Get the full Republic Services Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Waste Management ( WM) is up $0.17 (0.5%) to $32.69 on light volume Thus far, 522,725 shares of Waste Management exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $32.48-$32.74 after having opened the day at $32.50 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $32.52.

Waste Management, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides waste management services to residential, commercial, industrial, and municipal customers in North America. It offers collection, transfer, recycling, and disposal services. Waste Management has a market cap of $15.1 billion and is part of the industrial goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 17.6, equal to the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 0.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are no analysts that rate Waste Management a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 6 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Waste Management as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its reasonable valuation levels, increase in stock price during the past year and expanding profit margins. 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 Waste Management Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Cemex S.A.B. de C.V ( CX) is up $0.05 (0.6%) to $8.97 on light volume Thus far, 1.6 million shares of Cemex S.A.B. de C.V exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 13.2 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $8.90-$8.99 after having opened the day at $8.95 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $8.92.

CEMEX, S.A.B. de C.V., through its subsidiaries, engages in the production, marketing, distribution, and sale of cement, ready-mix concrete, aggregates, and other construction materials worldwide. Cemex S.A.B. de C.V has a market cap of $9.7 billion and is part of the industrial goods sector. Shares are up 65.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 3 analysts that rate Cemex S.A.B. de C.V a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Cemex S.A.B. de C.V as a sell. Among the areas we feel are negative, one of the most important has been poor profit margins. Get the full Cemex S.A.B. de C.V Ratings Report now.

EXCLUSIVE OFFER: Jim Cramer's Protégé, Dave Peltier, only buys Stocks Under $10 that he thinks could potentially double. See what he's trading today with a 14-day FREE pass

If you are interested in one of these 5 stocks, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the materials & construction industry could consider SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF ( XHB) while those bearish on the materials & construction industry could consider ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd ( SBM).

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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