5 Financial Stocks Driving The Sector Higher

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

Two out of the three major indices are trading lower today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 125 points (-0.8%) at 16,333 as of Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2014, 11:55 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,733 issues advancing vs. 1,234 declining with 157 unchanged.

The Financial sector currently sits up 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.1%. Top gainers within the sector include Signature Bank ( SBNY), up 11.7%, Blackstone Mortgage ( BXMT), up 11.0%, TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation ( AMTD), up 4.0%, Zions ( ZION), up 3.6% and Regions Financial Corporation ( RF), up 2.5%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Deutsche Bank ( DB), down 2.5%, Royal Bank of Scotland Group (The ( RBS), down 1.1%, Aegon ( AEG), down 2.2%, ING Groep N.V ( ING), down 1.7% and SLM ( SLM), down 1.5%.

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

5. SunTrust Banks ( STI) is one of the companies pushing the Financial sector higher today. As of noon trading, SunTrust Banks is up $0.29 (0.7%) to $39.63 on average volume. Thus far, 2.5 million shares of SunTrust Banks exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $39.38-$40.00 after having opened the day at $39.55 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $39.34.

SunTrust Banks, Inc. operates as the holding company for SunTrust Bank that provides various financial services in the United States. The company operates in three segments: Consumer Banking and Private Wealth Management, Wholesale Banking, and Mortgage Banking. SunTrust Banks has a market cap of $21.1 billion and is part of the banking industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 14.4, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 6.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 8 analysts who rate SunTrust Banks a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 14 rate it a hold.

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

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