5 Stocks Pushing The Services Sector 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 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 Services sector currently sits up 0.1% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.3%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Best Buy ( BBY), down 15.9%, Net Servicos De Comunicacao ( NETC), down 1.7%, CBS Corporation ( CBS), down 1.6%, News Corporation ( NWS), down 1.1% and Dollar General Corporation ( DG), down 0.9%. Top gainers within the sector include Ctrip.com International ( CTRP), up 6.1%, HMS Holdings Corporation ( HMSY), up 6.0%, Virgin Media ( VMED), up 4.3%, Melco Crown Entertainment ( MPEL), up 3.0% and McGraw-Hill Companies Incorporated ( MHP), up 2.6%.

TheStreet Ratings group would like to highlight 5 stocks pushing the sector lower today:

5. Costco Wholesale Corporation ( COST) is one of the companies pushing the Services sector lower today. As of noon trading, Costco Wholesale Corporation is down $0.59 (-0.6%) to $97.26 on light volume Thus far, 688,978 shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $96.95-$97.96 after having opened the day at $97.00 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $97.85.

Costco Wholesale Corporation engages in the operation of membership warehouses. The company offers branded and private-label products in a range of merchandise categories. Costco Wholesale Corporation has a market cap of $42.3 billion and is part of the retail industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 25.1, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 17.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 11 analysts that rate Costco Wholesale Corporation a buy, 3 analysts rate it a sell, and 6 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Costco Wholesale Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins. Get the full Costco Wholesale Corporation Ratings Report now.

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4. As of noon trading, MasterCard Incorporated ( MA) is down $3.76 (-0.8%) to $480.67 on light volume Thus far, 187,008 shares of MasterCard Incorporated exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 715,600 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $480.27-$484.80 after having opened the day at $481.22 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $484.43.

MasterCard Incorporated, a payments and technology company, together with its subsidiaries, provides transaction processing and other payment-related services in the United States and internationally. MasterCard Incorporated has a market cap of $57.7 billion and is part of the diversified services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 28.0, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 29.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 22 analysts that rate MasterCard Incorporated a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates MasterCard Incorporated as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins, growth in earnings per share, increase 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 MasterCard Incorporated Ratings Report now.

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3. As of noon trading, Visa ( V) is down $0.77 (-0.5%) to $146.43 on light volume Thus far, 810,359 shares of Visa exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.9 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $146.25-$147.69 after having opened the day at $146.88 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $147.20.

Visa Inc., a payments technology company, engages in the operation of retail electronic payments network worldwide. It facilitates commerce through the transfer of value and information among financial institutions, merchants, consumers, businesses, and government entities. Visa has a market cap of $79.2 billion and is part of the diversified services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 46.8, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 45.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 22 analysts that rate Visa a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Visa 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 net income, good cash flow from operations and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity. Get the full Visa Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Home Depot ( HD) is down $0.40 (-0.6%) to $62.01 on light volume Thus far, 1.9 million shares of Home Depot exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 8.4 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $61.79-$62.42 after having opened the day at $62.33 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $62.41.

The Home Depot, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as a home improvement retailer. The company's stores sell building materials, and home improvement and lawn and garden products to do-it-yourself, do-it-for-me (at D-I-F-M), and professional customers. Home Depot has a market cap of $94.1 billion and is part of the retail industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 22.3, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 48.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 10 analysts that rate Home Depot a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 12 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Home Depot as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, revenue growth, notable return on equity and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow. Get the full Home Depot Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Amazon.com ( AMZN) is down $2.37 (-0.9%) to $248.88 on light volume Thus far, 1.2 million shares of Amazon.com exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.4 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $248.35-$251.90 after having opened the day at $250.11 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $251.25.

Amazon.com, Inc. operates as an online retailer in North America and internationally. It operates retail Websites, such as amazon.com and amazon.ca. The company serves consumers through its retail Websites and focuses on selection, price, and convenience. Amazon.com has a market cap of $114.0 billion and is part of the retail industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 3147.0, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 45.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 20 analysts that rate Amazon.com a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Amazon.com as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. However, as a counter to these strengths, 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 Amazon.com Ratings Report now.

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If you are interested in one of these 5 stocks, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the services sector could consider iShares Dow Jones US Cons Services ( IYC) while those bearish on the services sector could consider ProShares Ultra Short Consumer Sers ( SCC).

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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