3 Drugs Stocks Driving The Industry 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 37 points (0.2%) at 16,943 as of Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 12:45 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,468 issues advancing vs. 1,471 declining with 161 unchanged.

The Drugs industry currently sits up 0.3% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.3%. Top gainers within the industry include Alexion Pharmaceuticals ( ALXN), up 2.2%, Vertex Pharmaceuticals ( VRTX), up 1.8%, Sanofi ( SNY), up 0.8% and GlaxoSmithKline ( GSK), up 0.6%.

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

3. Celgene ( CELG) is one of the companies pushing the Drugs industry higher today. As of noon trading, Celgene is up $1.50 (1.8%) to $87.22 on heavy volume. Thus far, 4.5 million shares of Celgene exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.3 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $83.98-$87.50 after having opened the day at $84.39 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $85.72.

Celgene Corporation, a biopharmaceutical company, discovers, develops, and commercializes therapies to treat cancer and immune-inflammatory related diseases in the United States and internationally. Celgene has a market cap of $71.2 billion and is part of the health care sector. Shares are up 1.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 19 analysts who rate Celgene a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Celgene as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, robust revenue growth, notable return on equity, good cash flow from operations 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 Celgene Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Merck ( MRK) is up $0.30 (0.5%) to $58.47 on light volume. Thus far, 3.3 million shares of Merck exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 9.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $58.18-$58.59 after having opened the day at $58.45 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $58.17.

Merck & Co., Inc. provides various health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, animal health, and consumer care products worldwide. Merck has a market cap of $171.0 billion and is part of the health care sector. Shares are up 16.2% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 6 analysts who rate Merck a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

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, expanding profit margins, solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity. Get the full Merck Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Gilead ( GILD) is up $1.38 (1.6%) to $88.49 on average volume. Thus far, 5.9 million shares of Gilead exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 13.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $87.19-$88.96 after having opened the day at $87.25 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $87.11.

Gilead Sciences, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, discovers, develops, and commercializes medicines for the treatment of life threatening diseases in North America, South America, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific. Gilead has a market cap of $133.9 billion and is part of the health care sector. Shares are up 16.0% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 15 analysts who rate Gilead a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Gilead as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and notable return on equity. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook. Get the full Gilead Ratings Report now.

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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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