Today's Stocks Driving Success For The Real Estate Industry

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 52 points (-0.4%) at 14,567 as of Thursday, April 18, 2013, 12:45 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,288 issues advancing vs. 1,600 declining with 135 unchanged.

The Real Estate industry currently sits down 0.24 versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.48. Top gainers within the industry include Nationstar Mortgage Holdings ( NSM), up 1.4%, Icahn ( IEP), up 0.5% and National Retail Properties ( NNN), up 0.9%.

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

5. Plum Creek Timber ( PCL) is one of the companies pushing the Real Estate industry higher today. As of noon trading, Plum Creek Timber is up $0.46 (0.91) to $51.13 on average volume Thus far, 398,467 shares of Plum Creek Timber exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 758,700 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $50.39-$51.19 after having opened the day at $50.75 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $50.67.

Plum Creek Timber Company, Inc. is a publicly owned real estate investment trust (REIT). The trust owns and manages timberlands in the United States. Its products include lumber products, plywood, medium density fiberboard, and related by-products, such as wood chips. Plum Creek Timber has a market cap of $8.4 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 41.1, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 14.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Plum Creek Timber 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 notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins. Get the full Plum Creek Timber Ratings Report now.

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4. As of noon trading, Realty Income Corporation ( O) is up $0.24 (0.50) to $47.87 on light volume Thus far, 453,075 shares of Realty Income Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.0 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $47.47-$47.99 after having opened the day at $47.70 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $47.63.

Realty Income Corporation engages in the acquisition and ownership of commercial retail real estate properties in the United States. The company leases its retail properties primarily to regional and national retail chain store operators. Realty Income Corporation has a market cap of $8.6 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 55.7, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 18.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Realty Income Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, 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 Realty Income Corporation Ratings Report now.

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3. As of noon trading, Equity Residential ( EQR) is up $0.34 (0.59) to $58.01 on light volume Thus far, 666,079 shares of Equity Residential exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $57.46-$58.32 after having opened the day at $57.62 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $57.67.

Equity Residential, a real estate investment trust (REIT), engages in the acquisition, development, and management of multifamily properties in the United States. Equity Residential has a market cap of $21.1 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 63.6, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 1.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Equity Residential as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, revenue growth and impressive record of earnings per share growth. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself and weak operating cash flow. Get the full Equity Residential Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Annaly Capital Management ( NLY) is up $0.15 (0.97) to $15.68 on light volume Thus far, 2.9 million shares of Annaly Capital Management exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 8.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $15.55-$15.74 after having opened the day at $15.59 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $15.53.

Annaly Capital Management, Inc. owns, manages, and finances a portfolio of real estate related investments in United States. Annaly Capital Management has a market cap of $15.0 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 9.3, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 10.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Annaly Capital Management as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, attractive valuation levels, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and notable return on equity. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook. Get the full Annaly Capital Management Ratings Report now.

Exclusive Offer: Jim Cramer's 'go-to' small/mid-cap guru Bryan Ashenberg only buys stocks he thinks could return 50-100%. See his top picks for 14-days FREE.

1. As of noon trading, AvalonBay Communities ( AVB) is up $0.77 (0.59) to $131.96 on light volume Thus far, 253,550 shares of AvalonBay Communities exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $130.46-$132.19 after having opened the day at $131.58 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $131.19.

AvalonBay Communities, Inc. engages in the development, redevelopment, acquisition, ownership, and operation of multifamily communities in the United States. AvalonBay Communities has a market cap of $17.3 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 49.6, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 3.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates AvalonBay Communities as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations, impressive record of earnings per share growth and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full AvalonBay Communities Ratings Report now.

Exclusive Offer: Jim Cramer's 'go-to' small/mid-cap guru Bryan Ashenberg only buys stocks he thinks could return 50-100%. See his top picks for 14-days FREE.

If you are interested in one of these 5 stocks, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the real estate industry could consider iShares Dow Jones US Real Estate ( IYR) while those bearish on the real estate industry could consider ProShares Short Real Estate Fund ( REK).

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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