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

All three major indices are trading down today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 23 points (-0.2%) at 13,146 as of Friday, Dec. 14, 2012, 11:50 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,344 issues advancing vs. 1,517 declining with 152 unchanged.

The Financial sector currently sits down 0.1% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.3%. Top gainers within the sector include Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group ( MTU), up 1.5%, Nomura Holdings ( NMR), up 1.4%, Royal Bank of Scotland Group (The ( RBS), up 1.1%, Banco Santander Chile ( BSAC), up 1.1% and Banco Santander ( SAN), up 0.9%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Altisource Portfolio Solutions ( ASPS), down 9.5%, MetLife ( MET), down 2.6%, Discover Financial Services ( DFS), down 2.2%, Charles Schwab ( SCHW), down 1.6% and American Capital Agency ( AGNC), down 1.1%.

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

3. Lloyds Banking Group ( LYG) is one of the companies pushing the Financial sector higher today. As of noon trading, Lloyds Banking Group is up $0.03 (1.0%) to $3.01 on light volume Thus far, 244,497 shares of Lloyds Banking Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $3.01-$3.03 after having opened the day at $3.01 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $2.98.

Lloyds Banking Group plc provides banking and financial services to personal and corporate customers primarily in the United Kingdom. The company's Retail division provides banking, mortgages, and other financial services to personal customers. Lloyds Banking Group has a market cap of $51.6 billion and is part of the banking industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 11.9, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 90.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 3 analysts that rate Lloyds Banking Group a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Lloyds Banking Group as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance and increase in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the growth in the company's earnings per share has not been good. Get the full Lloyds Banking Group Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, UBS ( UBS) is up $0.09 (0.6%) to $16.31 on average volume Thus far, 1.8 million shares of UBS exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $16.21-$16.39 after having opened the day at $16.25 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $16.22.

UBS AG, a financial services firm, provides wealth management, asset management, and investment banking products and services to private, corporate, and institutional clients worldwide. The company is also involved in retail and commercial banking in Switzerland. UBS has a market cap of $62.8 billion and is part of the banking industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.2, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 37.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate UBS a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates UBS as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity, poor profit margins and weak operating cash flow. Get the full UBS Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Morgan Stanley ( MS) is up $0.11 (0.6%) to $17.91 on light volume Thus far, 5.0 million shares of Morgan Stanley exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 19.9 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $17.70-$17.91 after having opened the day at $17.72 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $17.80.

Morgan Stanley, a financial holding company, provides various financial products and services to corporations, governments, financial institutions, and individuals worldwide. Morgan Stanley has a market cap of $34.9 billion and is part of the financial services industry. Shares are up 17.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 10 analysts that rate Morgan Stanley a buy, 3 analysts rate it a sell, and 9 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Morgan Stanley as a hold. The company's strongest point has been its strong cash flow from operations. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including feeble growth in the company's earnings per share, deteriorating net income and disappointing return on equity. Get the full Morgan Stanley 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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