5 Stocks Pushing The Services 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 up today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 10 points (0.1%) at 14,085 as of Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013, 12:04 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,607 issues advancing vs. 1,243 declining with 160 unchanged.

The Services sector currently is unchanged today versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.2%. Top gainers within the sector include Limited Brands ( LTD), up 3.5%, Luxottica Group ( LUX), up 2.1%, Fleetcor Technologies ( FLT), up 2.4%, Canadian National Railway ( CNI), up 1.5% and Expeditors International of Washington ( EXPD), up 1.6%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include J.C. Penney ( JCP), down 15.7%, Cablevision Systems ( CVC), down 10.2%, Sears Holdings Corporation ( SHLD), down 5.5%, Pandora Media ( P), down 5.3% and Kohl's ( KSS), down 1.7%.

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

5. Norfolk Southern Corporation ( NSC) is one of the companies pushing the Services sector higher today. As of noon trading, Norfolk Southern Corporation is up $0.62 (0.8%) to $73.32 on light volume Thus far, 888,761 shares of Norfolk Southern Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $72.62-$73.49 after having opened the day at $72.86 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $72.70.

Norfolk Southern Corporation, through its subsidiaries, engages in the rail transportation of raw materials, intermediate products, and finished goods primarily in the United States. Norfolk Southern Corporation has a market cap of $22.4 billion and is part of the transportation industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.3, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 17.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate Norfolk Southern Corporation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 13 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Norfolk Southern Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full Norfolk Southern Corporation Ratings Report now.

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4. As of noon trading, Gap ( GPS) is up $0.51 (1.6%) to $33.02 on light volume Thus far, 1.7 million shares of Gap exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.9 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $32.35-$33.04 after having opened the day at $32.38 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $32.51.

The Gap, Inc. operates as a specialty retailer. The company offers apparel, accessories, and personal care products for men, women, children, and babies under the Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Piperlime, and Athleta brand names. Gap has a market cap of $15.2 billion and is part of the retail industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.6, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 2.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 9 analysts that rate Gap a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Gap as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, revenue growth, solid stock price performance, expanding profit margins 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 Gap Ratings Report now.

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3. As of noon trading, Yum Brands ( YUM) is up $0.41 (0.6%) to $65.79 on light volume Thus far, 1.2 million shares of Yum Brands exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $65.43-$66.48 after having opened the day at $65.50 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $65.38.

YUM! Brands, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates quick service restaurants in the United States and internationally. It operates in six segments: YUM Restaurants China, YUM Restaurants International, Taco Bell U.S., KFC U.S., Pizza Hut U.S., and YUM Restaurants India. Yum Brands has a market cap of $29.2 billion and is part of the leisure industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 19.2, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 1.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 11 analysts that rate Yum Brands a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Yum Brands as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity and good cash flow from operations. 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 Yum Brands Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Las Vegas Sands ( LVS) is up $0.85 (1.7%) to $51.82 on average volume Thus far, 4.6 million shares of Las Vegas Sands exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 7.7 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $51.03-$52.63 after having opened the day at $51.07 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $50.97.

Las Vegas Sands Corp., together with its subsidiaries, owns, develops, and operates various integrated resort properties primarily in the United States, Macau, and Singapore. Las Vegas Sands has a market cap of $41.4 billion and is part of the leisure industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 23.5, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 10.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 17 analysts that rate Las Vegas Sands a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Las Vegas Sands 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 and increase in stock price during the past year. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results. Get the full Las Vegas Sands Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Netflix ( NFLX) is up $5.13 (2.8%) to $189.45 on average volume Thus far, 2.2 million shares of Netflix exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $183.51-$189.94 after having opened the day at $183.81 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $184.32.

Netflix, Inc. provides Internet television network service that enables subscribers to stream TV shows and movies directly on TVs, computers, and mobile devices in the United States and internationally. Netflix has a market cap of $10.3 billion and is part of the specialty retail industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 634.8, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 99.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 6 analysts that rate Netflix a buy, 4 analysts rate it a sell, and 17 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Netflix as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow. Get the full Netflix 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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