3 Financial Services Stocks Moving The Industry Upward

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.

All three major indices are trading down today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 91 points (-0.6%) at 15,838 as of Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014, 11:55 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 929 issues advancing vs. 2,026 declining with 145 unchanged.

The Financial Services industry currently sits down 0.3% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.4%. Top gainers within the industry include Piper Jaffray Cos ( PJC), up 8.8%, and NewStar Financial ( NEWS), up 8.2%. On the negative front, top decliners within the industry include Greenhill ( GHL), down 5.1%, Virtus Investment Partners ( VRTS), down 2.6%, WisdomTree Investments ( WETF), down 2.9%, T. Rowe Price Group ( TROW), down 1.9% and E*Trade Financial ( ETFC), down 1.7%.

TheStreet would like to highlight 3 stocks pushing the industry higher today:

3. Total System Services ( TSS) is one of the companies pushing the Financial Services industry higher today. As of noon trading, Total System Services is up $0.45 (1.5%) to $31.03 on heavy volume. Thus far, 1.9 million shares of Total System Services exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.2 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $27.00-$31.39 after having opened the day at $27.27 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $30.58.

Total System Services, Inc. provides payment processing and other services to card-issuing and merchant acquiring institutions in the United States and internationally. It operates through three segments: North America Services, International Services, and Merchant Services. Total System Services has a market cap of $5.8 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 24.1, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 8.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 8 analysts who rate Total System Services a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 8 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Total System Services as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, growth in earnings per share, 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 Total System Services Ratings Report now.

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

2. As of noon trading, KKR ( KKR) is up $0.18 (0.7%) to $24.40 on average volume. Thus far, 878,367 shares of KKR exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.2 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $23.83-$24.47 after having opened the day at $24.00 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $24.22.

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. is a private equity investment firm specializing in acquisitions, leveraged buyouts, management buyouts, special situations, growth equity, mature, and middle market investments. KKR has a market cap of $6.9 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.7, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 0.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 10 analysts who rate KKR a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 1 rates it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates KKR as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and attractive valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow. Get the full KKR Ratings Report now.

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

1. As of noon trading, SLM ( SLM) is up $0.43 (1.9%) to $23.31 on heavy volume. Thus far, 4.4 million shares of SLM exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.7 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $22.93-$23.41 after having opened the day at $22.96 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $22.88.

SLM Corporation, also known as Sallie Mae, originates, acquires, finances, and services private education loans in the United States. The company operates through three segments: Consumer Lending, Business Services, and FFELP Loans. SLM has a market cap of $10.0 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 8.0, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 12.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 4 analysts who rate SLM a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

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

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

If you are interested in one of these 3 stocks, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the financial services industry could consider Financial Select Sector SPDR ( XLF) while those bearish on the financial services industry could consider Proshares Short Financials ( SEF).

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