3 Stocks Pushing The Basic Materials Sector Downward

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 down today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 25 points (-0.1%) at 16,936 as of Monday, July 28, 2014, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,030 issues advancing vs. 1,900 declining with 205 unchanged.

The Basic Materials sector currently sits down 0.7% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.2%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include YPF Sociedad Anonima ( YPF), down 4.0%, Pioneer Natural Resources ( PXD), down 1.6%, Canadian Natural Resources ( CNQ), down 1.5%, National Oilwell Varco ( NOV), down 1.5% and Halliburton ( HAL), down 1.5%. Top gainers within the sector include Ecopetrol ( EC), up 1.3%, Total ( TOT), up 0.7% and Exxon Mobil Corporation ( XOM), up 0.7%.

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

3. Seadrill ( SDRL) is one of the companies pushing the Basic Materials sector lower today. As of noon trading, Seadrill is down $1.05 (-2.8%) to $36.44 on heavy volume. Thus far, 3.3 million shares of Seadrill exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $36.18-$37.37 after having opened the day at $37.31 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $37.49.

Seadrill Limited, an offshore drilling contractor, provides offshore drilling services to the oil and gas industry worldwide. The company operates in three segments: Floaters, Jack-up Rigs, and Tender Rigs. Seadrill has a market cap of $17.6 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 8.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 3 analysts that rate Seadrill a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Seadrill as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, notable return on equity, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins 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. Get the full Seadrill Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Baker Hughes ( BHI) is down $0.83 (-1.1%) to $72.59 on light volume. Thus far, 748,518 shares of Baker Hughes exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.4 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $72.51-$73.40 after having opened the day at $73.40 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $73.42.

Baker Hughes Incorporated supplies oilfield services, products, technology, and systems to the oil and natural gas industry worldwide. Baker Hughes has a market cap of $32.2 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are up 32.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 15 analysts that rate Baker Hughes a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 9 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Baker Hughes as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, solid stock price performance and impressive record of earnings per share growth. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow. Get the full Baker Hughes Ratings Report now.

STOCKS TO BUY: 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, Monsanto ( MON) is down $0.71 (-0.6%) to $115.08 on average volume. Thus far, 1.3 million shares of Monsanto exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $115.02-$116.21 after having opened the day at $115.64 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $115.79.

Monsanto Company, together with its subsidiaries, provides agricultural products for farmers worldwide. It operates in two segments, Seeds and Genomics, and Agricultural Productivity. Monsanto has a market cap of $61.0 billion and is part of the chemicals industry. Shares are down 0.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 13 analysts that rate Monsanto a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Monsanto as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, expanding profit margins, notable return on equity and reasonable valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full Monsanto Ratings Report now.

STOCKS TO BUY: 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 basic materials sector could consider Materials Select Sector SPDR ( XLB) while those bearish on the basic materials sector could consider ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd ( SBM).

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