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. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) is trading down 18.0 points (-0.1%) at 15,236 as of Tuesday, Jun 4, 2013, 11:50 a.m. ET. During this time, 262.4 million shares of the 30 Dow components have changed hands vs. an average daily trading volume of 593 million. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,323 issues advancing vs. 1,556 declining with 134 unchanged.
EXCLUSIVE OFFER: Jim Cramer's Protégé, Dave Peltier, only buys Stocks Under $10 that he thinks could potentially double. See what he's trading today with a 14-day FREE pass.
The Dow component leading the way higher looks to be Merck (NYSE: MRK), which is sporting a $1.54 gain (+3.2%) bringing the stock to $49.98. Volume for Merck currently sits at 16.3 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 17.6 million shares. Merck has a market cap of $141.02 billion and is part of the health care sector and drugs industry. Shares are up 18.3% year to date as of Monday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 3.7%. Merck & Co., Inc. provides various health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, animal health, and consumer care products worldwide. The company has a P/E ratio of 23.8, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. TheStreet Ratings rates Merck as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, 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.