Dow Today: Merck (MRK) Leads The Day Higher, Pfizer (PFE) Lags

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) is trading down 46.0 points (-0.3%) at 15,399 as of Wednesday, Feb 5, 2014, 9:35 a.m. ET. During this time, 19.3 million shares of the 30 Dow components have changed hands vs. an average daily trading volume of 374 million. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 804 issues advancing vs. 1,939 declining with 212 unchanged.
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The Dow component leading the way higher looks to be Merck (NYSE: MRK), which is sporting a $1.20 gain (+2.2%) bringing the stock to $54.71. Volume for Merck currently sits at 2.3 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 12.5 million shares.

Merck has a market cap of $152.17 billion and is part of the health care sector and drugs industry. Shares are up 6.9% year to date as of Tuesday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 3.4%.

Merck & Co., Inc. provides various health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, animal health, and consumer care products worldwide.

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 solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Holding back the Dow today is Pfizer (NYSE: PFE), which is lagging the broader Dow index with a 28-cent decline (-0.9%) bringing the stock to $30.90. This single loss is lowering the Dow Jones Industrial Average by 2.12 points or roughly accounting for 4.6% of the Dow's overall loss. Volume for Pfizer currently sits at 1.6 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 25.6 million shares.

Pfizer has a market cap of $198.32 billion and is part of the health care sector and drugs industry. Shares are up 2.6% year to date as of Tuesday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 3.4%.

Pfizer Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, discovers, develops, manufactures, and sells medicines for people and animals worldwide.

TheStreet Ratings rates Pfizer as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, 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.

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