Dow Today: Verizon Communications (VZ) Leads The Day Higher, Chevron (CVX) 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 down 40.0 points (-0.2%) at 16,875 as of Friday, Jul 11, 2014, 9:36 a.m. ET. During this time, 12.5 million shares of the 30 Dow components have changed hands vs. an average daily trading volume of 308.6 million. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 955 issues advancing vs. 1,717 declining with 259 unchanged.
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The Dow component leading the way higher looks to be Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ), which is sporting a 45-cent gain (+0.9%) bringing the stock to $50.09. Volume for Verizon Communications currently sits at 1.5 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 15.7 million shares.

Verizon Communications has a market cap of $202.5 billion and is part of the technology sector and telecommunications industry. Shares are up 1% year-to-date as of Thursday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 4.3%.

Verizon Communications Inc. provides communications, information, and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses, and governmental agencies worldwide.

TheStreet Ratings rates Verizon Communications as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins, compelling growth in net income and impressive record of earnings per share growth. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated.

Holding back the Dow today is Chevron (NYSE: CVX), which is lagging the broader Dow index with a $1.27 decline (-1%) bringing the stock to $128.98. This single loss is lowering the Dow Jones Industrial Average by 9.61 points or roughly accounting for 24% of the Dow's overall loss. Volume for Chevron currently sits at 348,872 shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 5.7 million shares.

Chevron has a market cap of $250.12 billion and is part of the basic materials sector and energy industry. Shares are up 4.3% year-to-date as of Thursday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 3.3%.

Chevron Corporation, through its subsidiaries, is engaged in petroleum, chemicals, mining, power generation, and energy operations worldwide. The company operates in two segments, Upstream and Downstream.

TheStreet Ratings rates Chevron 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, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat weak growth in earnings per share.

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