3 Financial Stocks Pushing The 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 45 points (0.3%) at 16,697 as of Thursday, Aug. 14, 2014, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 2,017 issues advancing vs. 963 declining with 158 unchanged.

The Financial sector currently sits up 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.3%. Top gainers within the sector include Shinhan Financial Group ( SHG), up 2.4%, HDFC Bank ( HDB), up 2.3%, Credit Suisse Group ( CS), up 2.1%, Weyerhaeuser ( WY), up 1.7% and Hartford Financial Services Group ( HIG), up 1.5%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include AvalonBay Communities ( AVB), down 0.8%, and MasterCard ( MA), down 0.6%.

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

3. MetLife ( MET) is one of the companies pushing the Financial sector higher today. As of noon trading, MetLife is up $0.42 (0.8%) to $52.86 on light volume. Thus far, 1.5 million shares of MetLife exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $52.47-$52.94 after having opened the day at $52.52 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $52.44.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

MetLife, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides insurance, annuities, and employee benefit programs in the United States, Japan, Latin America, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. MetLife has a market cap of $58.7 billion and is part of the insurance industry. Shares are down 2.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 15 analysts who rate MetLife a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates MetLife as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures 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 MetLife 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.

2. As of noon trading, Wells Fargo ( WFC) is up $0.32 (0.6%) to $50.30 on average volume. Thus far, 5.6 million shares of Wells Fargo exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 14.6 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $50.06-$50.49 after having opened the day at $50.11 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $49.99.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

Wells Fargo & Company provides retail, commercial, and corporate banking services to individuals, businesses, and institutions. Wells Fargo has a market cap of $259.9 billion and is part of the banking industry. Shares are up 10.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 10 analysts who rate Wells Fargo a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 8 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Wells Fargo as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, increase in net income, expanding profit margins and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow. Get the full Wells Fargo 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, Citigroup ( C) is up $0.29 (0.6%) to $49.04 on light volume. Thus far, 4.1 million shares of Citigroup exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 16.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $48.74-$49.10 after having opened the day at $48.82 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $48.75.

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12 months. Learn more.

Citigroup Inc., a diversified financial services holding company, provides various financial products and services to consumers, corporations, governments, and institutions. Citigroup has a market cap of $146.9 billion and is part of the banking industry. Shares are down 6.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 15 analysts who rate Citigroup a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Citigroup as a buy. Among the primary strengths of the company is its expanding profit margins over time. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself. Get the full Citigroup 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 financial sector could consider Financial Select Sector SPDR ( XLF) while those bearish on the financial sector could consider Proshares Short Financials ( SEF).

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