Dow Today: Boeing (BA) Leads The Day Higher, Merck (MRK) Lags

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.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) is trading up 59 points (+0.4%) at 15,860 as of Tuesday, Feb 11, 2014, 9:35 a.m. ET. During this time, 15.3 million shares of the 30 Dow components have changed hands vs. an average daily trading volume of 379.5 million. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,684 issues advancing vs. 980 declining with 266 unchanged.
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The Dow component leading the way higher looks to be Boeing (NYSE: BA), which is sporting a $1.10 gain (+0.9%) bringing the stock to $128.26. This single gain is lifting the Dow Jones Industrial Average by 8.33 points or roughly accounting for 14.1% of the Dow's overall gain. Volume for Boeing currently sits at 275,838 shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 4.9 million shares.

Boeing has a market cap of $95.45 billion and is part of the industrial goods sector and aerospace/defense industry. Shares are down 6.9% year to date as of Monday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 2.3%.

The Boeing Company, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the design, development, manufacture, sale, and support of commercial jetliners, military aircraft, satellites, missile defense, human space flight, and launch systems and services worldwide.

TheStreet Ratings rates Boeing as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, compelling growth in net income and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

Holding back the Dow today is Merck (NYSE: MRK), which is lagging the broader Dow index with a 24-cent decline (-0.4%) bringing the stock to $54.65. Volume for Merck currently sits at 485,187 shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 12.8 million shares.

Merck has a market cap of $160.03 billion and is part of the health care sector and drugs industry. Shares are up 9.7% year to date as of Monday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 3.2%.

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

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