3 Stocks Pushing The Health Care 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.

All three major indices are trading up today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 77 points (0.5%) at 17,053 as of Thursday, July 3, 2014, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,714 issues advancing vs. 1,323 declining with 126 unchanged.

The Health Care sector currently sits up 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.5%. Top gainers within the sector include Thermo Fisher Scientific ( TMO), up 1.6%, Illumina ( ILMN), up 1.5%, Medtronic ( MDT), up 0.9%, Gilead ( GILD), up 0.9% and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries ( TEVA), up 0.9%. A company within the sector that fell today was HCA Holdings ( HCA), up 0.5%.

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

3. UnitedHealth Group ( UNH) is one of the companies pushing the Health Care sector higher today. As of noon trading, UnitedHealth Group is up $0.78 (0.9%) to $83.27 on light volume. Thus far, 1.4 million shares of UnitedHealth Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4.2 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $82.32-$83.44 after having opened the day at $82.55 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $82.49.

UnitedHealth Group Incorporated operates as a diversified health and well-being company in the United States. UnitedHealth Group has a market cap of $80.2 billion and is part of the health services industry. Shares are up 9.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 14 analysts who rate UnitedHealth Group a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates UnitedHealth Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity, good cash flow from operations, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures 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 UnitedHealth Group Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Express Scripts ( ESRX) is up $0.40 (0.6%) to $69.40 on light volume. Thus far, 1.2 million shares of Express Scripts exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $69.00-$69.64 after having opened the day at $69.34 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $69.01.

Express Scripts Holding Company provides a range of pharmacy benefit management (PBM) services primarily in the United States and Canada. The company offers healthcare management and administration services on behalf of its clients. Express Scripts has a market cap of $53.4 billion and is part of the health services industry. Shares are down 1.8% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 14 analysts who rate Express Scripts a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Express Scripts 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, notable return on equity 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. Get the full Express Scripts 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 $1.30 (1.1%) to $122.33 on light volume. Thus far, 1.1 million shares of Amgen exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $120.72-$122.70 after having opened the day at $121.45 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $121.03.

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 $91.1 billion and is part of the drugs industry. Shares are up 5.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 9 analysts who rate Amgen a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Amgen as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, reasonable valuation levels, good cash flow from operations, increase in stock price during the past year 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 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 health care sector could consider Health Care Select Sector SPDR ( XLV) while those bearish on the health care sector could consider ProShares Ultra Short Health Care ( RXD).
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