3 Stocks Pushing The Health Services Industry 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

All three major indices are trading down today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 28 points (-0.2%) at 13,217 as of Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012, 12:05 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,125 issues advancing vs. 1,742 declining with 157 unchanged.

The Health Services industry currently is unchanged today versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.3%. A company within the industry that fell today was Smith & Nephew ( SNN), up 0.9%.

TheStreet Ratings group would like to highlight 3 stocks pushing the industry lower today:

3. Brookdale Senior Living ( BKD) is one of the companies pushing the Health Services industry lower today. As of noon trading, Brookdale Senior Living is down $0.54 (-2.1%) to $24.71 on light volume Thus far, 303,724 shares of Brookdale Senior Living exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $24.71-$25.00 after having opened the day at $24.96 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $25.25.

Brookdale Senior Living Inc. owns and operates senior living communities in the United States. The company owns, leases, and operates retirement centers, assisted living and dementia-care communities, and continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs). Brookdale Senior Living has a market cap of $3.2 billion and is part of the health care sector. Shares are up 47.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 6 analysts that rate Brookdale Senior Living a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 1 rates it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Brookdale Senior Living as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, revenue growth and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income, generally higher debt management risk and poor profit margins. Get the full Brookdale Senior Living Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Intuitive Surgical ( ISRG) is down $2.80 (-0.5%) to $536.78 on light volume Thus far, 72,189 shares of Intuitive Surgical exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 359,800 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $533.00-$540.00 after having opened the day at $535.75 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $539.57.

Intuitive Surgical, Inc. designs, manufactures, and markets da Vinci surgical systems for various surgical procedures, including urologic, gynecologic, cardiothoracic, general, and head and neck surgeries. Intuitive Surgical has a market cap of $21.3 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 34.6, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 16.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 6 analysts that rate Intuitive Surgical a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 6 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Intuitive Surgical as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company is trading at a premium valuation based on our review of its current price compared to such things as earnings and book value. Get the full Intuitive Surgical Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, UnitedHealth Group ( UNH) is down $0.50 (-0.9%) to $54.75 on light volume Thus far, 922,910 shares of UnitedHealth Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 6.0 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $54.75-$55.39 after having opened the day at $55.19 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $55.25.

UnitedHealth Group Incorporated operates as a diversified health and well-being company in the United States. UnitedHealth Group has a market cap of $55.9 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 10.4, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 8.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 15 analysts that rate UnitedHealth Group a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates UnitedHealth Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in stock price during the past year, impressive record of earnings per share growth, increase in net income, revenue growth and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow. Get the full UnitedHealth Group 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 services industry could consider Health Care Select Sector SPDR ( XLV) while those bearish on the health services industry 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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