5 Financial Stocks Nudging The 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 73 points (0.5%) at 14,495 as of Friday, March 22, 2013, 12:45 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,725 issues advancing vs. 1,132 declining with 170 unchanged.

The Financial sector currently sits up 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.6%. Top gainers within the sector include Assured Guaranty ( AGO), up 4.0%, Credit Suisse Group ( CS), up 2.5%, Woori Finance Holdings ( WF), up 2.3%, Annaly Capital Management ( NLY), up 2.1% and American Capital Agency ( AGNC), up 1.6%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Royal Bank of Scotland Group (The ( RBS), down 1.5%, Orix Corporation ( IX), down 1.0% and Banco De Chile ( BCH), down 0.8%.

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

5. Discover Financial Services ( DFS) is one of the companies pushing the Financial sector higher today. As of noon trading, Discover Financial Services is up $0.62 (1.4%) to $45.08 on light volume Thus far, 1.8 million shares of Discover Financial Services exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.2 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $44.50-$45.12 after having opened the day at $44.51 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $44.46.

Discover Financial Services, a bank holding company, provides direct banking and payment services in the United States. It operates in two segments, Direct Banking and Payment Services. Discover Financial Services has a market cap of $22.3 billion and is part of the financial services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 10.1, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 15.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 14 analysts that rate Discover Financial Services a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Discover Financial Services 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, increase in net income, revenue growth 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 Discover Financial Services Ratings Report now.

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