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Republic Services ( RSG) pushed the Materials & Construction industry lower today making it today's featured Materials & Construction laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.2%. By the end of trading, Republic Services fell $0.36 (-1.0%) to $34.54 on average volume. Throughout the day, 1,425,156 shares of Republic Services exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,519,600 shares. The stock ranged in price between $34.48-$34.95 after having opened the day at $34.92 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $34.90. Other companies within the Materials & Construction industry that declined today were: India Globalization Capital ( IGC), down 7.9%, Real Goods Solar ( RSOL), down 6.0%, Tri-Tech ( TRIT), down 4.7% and Perma-Fix Environmental Services ( PESI), down 4.6%.

Republic Services, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides non-hazardous solid waste collection, transfer, and recycling and disposal services for commercial, industrial, municipal, and residential customers in the United States and Puerto Rico. Republic Services has a market cap of $12.4 billion and is part of the industrial goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 26.1, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 17.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 4 analysts that rate Republic Services a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Republic Services as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, reasonable valuation levels, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.

On the positive front, Caesarstone Sdot-Yam ( CSTE), up 5.8%, McDermott International ( MDR), up 4.4%, Gafisa ( GFA), up 4.2% and Desarrolladora Homex SAB de CV ADR ( HXM), up 4.1% , were all gainers within the materials & construction industry with DR Horton ( DHI) being today's featured materials & construction industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the materials & construction industry could consider SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF ( XHB) while those bearish on the materials & construction industry could consider ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd ( SBM).

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