3 Stocks Advancing The Drugs Industry

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 up today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 14 points (0.1%) at 16,515 as of Thursday, April 24, 2014, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,645 issues advancing vs. 1,332 declining with 182 unchanged.

The Drugs industry currently sits up 0.1% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.3%. A company within the industry that increased today was AstraZeneca ( AZN), up 3.0%. On the negative front, top decliners within the industry include Novartis ( NVS), down 1.8%, Eli Lilly and ( LLY), down 1.3%, Pfizer ( PFE), down 0.7% and Gilead ( GILD), down 0.5%.

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

3. Alexion Pharmaceuticals ( ALXN) is one of the companies pushing the Drugs industry higher today. As of noon trading, Alexion Pharmaceuticals is up $6.04 (4.0%) to $158.26 on heavy volume. Thus far, 2.3 million shares of Alexion Pharmaceuticals exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.0 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $150.10-$163.50 after having opened the day at $158.35 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $152.23.

Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, develops and commercializes life-transforming therapeutic products. Alexion Pharmaceuticals has a market cap of $30.9 billion and is part of the health care sector. Shares are up 14.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 14 analysts who rate Alexion Pharmaceuticals a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Alexion Pharmaceuticals as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, good cash flow from operations, solid stock price performance 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 Alexion Pharmaceuticals Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Valeant Pharmaceuticals International ( VRX) is up $1.22 (0.9%) to $134.45 on average volume. Thus far, 1.7 million shares of Valeant Pharmaceuticals International exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.3 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $130.57-$134.75 after having opened the day at $133.13 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $133.23.

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. develops, manufactures, and markets pharmaceuticals, over-the-counter (OTC) products, and medical devices in the areas of eye health, dermatology, and neurology therapeutic classes worldwide. Valeant Pharmaceuticals International has a market cap of $45.3 billion and is part of the health care sector. Shares are up 13.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 10 analysts who rate Valeant Pharmaceuticals International a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Valeant Pharmaceuticals International as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance and increase in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including generally higher debt management risk and disappointing return on equity. Get the full Valeant Pharmaceuticals International 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, Amgen ( AMGN) is up $0.84 (0.7%) to $114.15 on heavy volume. Thus far, 3.6 million shares of Amgen exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.7 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $111.79-$114.50 after having opened the day at $114.11 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $113.32.

Amgen Inc., a biotechnology company, discovers, develops, manufactures, and delivers human therapeutics in the areas of oncology, hematology, inflammation, bone health, nephrology, cardiovascular, and general medicine worldwide. Amgen has a market cap of $90.2 billion and is part of the health care sector. Shares are down 0.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 7 analysts who rate Amgen a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Amgen as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, revenue growth, notable return on equity and reasonable valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated. Get the full Amgen 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 drugs industry could consider SPDR S&P Pharmaceuticals ETF ( XPH) while those bearish on the drugs industry could consider ProShares UltraShort Nasdaq Biotech ( BIS).

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