4 Stocks Pushing The Health Care 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 up today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 45 points (0.3%) at 14,027 as of Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2013, 12:05 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,918 issues advancing vs. 965 declining with 159 unchanged.

The Health Care sector currently sits up 2.7% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.5%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Medtronic ( MDT), down 2.4%, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals ( REGN), down 1.6%, Aetna ( AET), down 1.5% and Cigna ( CI), down 1.4%. Top gainers within the sector include Sanofi ( SNY), up 3.2%, Gilead ( GILD), up 2.2%, Merck ( MRK), up 1.3%, Pfizer ( PFE), up 0.9% and Novo Nordisk A/S ( NVO), up 0.8%.

TheStreet Ratings group would like to highlight 4 stocks pushing the sector lower today:

4. Alexion Pharmaceuticals ( ALXN) is one of the companies pushing the Health Care sector lower today. As of noon trading, Alexion Pharmaceuticals is down $2.75 (-3.2%) to $83.26 on heavy volume Thus far, 1.6 million shares of Alexion Pharmaceuticals exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $81.82-$85.47 after having opened the day at $82.77 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $86.01.

Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, engages in the discovery, development, and commercialization of biologic therapeutic products in the United States, Europe, Latin America, Japan, and the Asia Pacific. Alexion Pharmaceuticals has a market cap of $16.7 billion and is part of the drugs industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 40.4, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 8.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 15 analysts that rate Alexion Pharmaceuticals a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Alexion Pharmaceuticals 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, expanding profit margins, impressive record of earnings per share growth and compelling growth in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity. Get the full Alexion Pharmaceuticals Ratings Report now.

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3. As of noon trading, Humana ( HUM) is down $5.74 (-7.4%) to $72.25 on heavy volume Thus far, 10.0 million shares of Humana exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.8 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $69.78-$72.28 after having opened the day at $69.97 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $77.99.

Humana Inc. operates as a health care company that offers a range of insurance products and health and wellness services that incorporate an integrated approach to lifelong well-being. Humana has a market cap of $12.3 billion and is part of the health services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 10.4, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 13.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 15 analysts that rate Humana a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 6 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Humana 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, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins. Get the full Humana Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Biogen Idec ( BIIB) is down $2.12 (-1.3%) to $166.62 on light volume Thus far, 385,827 shares of Biogen Idec exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.3 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $166.33-$168.90 after having opened the day at $168.67 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $168.74.

Biogen Idec Inc. discovers, develops, manufactures, and markets therapies for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, hemophilia, and autoimmune disorders in the United States and internationally. Biogen Idec has a market cap of $39.9 billion and is part of the drugs industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 29.3, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 15.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 10 analysts that rate Biogen Idec a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Biogen Idec 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, solid stock price performance and good cash flow from operations. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results. Get the full Biogen Idec Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, UnitedHealth Group ( UNH) is down $1.24 (-2.2%) to $56.08 on heavy volume Thus far, 7.5 million shares of UnitedHealth Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 6.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $54.04-$56.20 after having opened the day at $54.20 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $57.32.

UnitedHealth Group Incorporated operates as a diversified health and well-being company in the United States. UnitedHealth Group has a market cap of $58.7 billion and is part of the health services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 10.9, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 5.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate UnitedHealth Group a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 5 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 revenue growth, attractive valuation levels, growth in earnings per share, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins. Get the full UnitedHealth Group 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 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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