Dow Today: Visa (V) Leads The Day Higher, Microsoft (MSFT) Lags

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) closed up 60 points (+0.4%) at 16,979. During the day, 235.1 million shares of the 30 Dow components have changed hands vs. an average daily trading volume of 303.1 million. The NYSE advances/declines ratio closed at 1,544 issues advancing vs. 1,461 declining with 193 unchanged.
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The Dow component that led the way higher today was Visa (NYSE: V), which sported a $1.20 gain (+0.6%) bringing the stock to $216.20. This single gain lifted the Dow Jones Industrial Average by 9.08 points or roughly accounting for 15.1% of the Dow's overall gain. Volume for Visa ended the day at 1.8 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 2.4 million shares.

Visa has a market cap of $106.04 billion and is part of the financial sector and financial services industry. Shares are down 3.5% year-to-date as of Tuesday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 0.8%.

Visa Inc., a payments technology company, operates as a retail electronic payments network worldwide. The company facilitates commerce through the transfer of value and information among financial institutions, merchants, consumers, businesses, and government entities.

TheStreet Ratings rates Visa 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, growth in earnings per share, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

Holding the Dow back today was Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT), which lagged the broader Dow index with a 38-cent decline (-0.8%) bringing the stock to $44.95. Volume for Microsoft ended the day at 24.7 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 29.2 million shares.

Microsoft has a market cap of $371.7 billion and is part of the technology sector and computer software & services industry. Shares are up 21.2% year-to-date as of Tuesday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 2.5%.

Microsoft Corporation develops, licenses, markets, and supports software, services, and devices worldwide. The company's Devices and Consumer (D&C) Licensing segment licenses Windows operating system and related software; Microsoft Office for consumers; and Windows Phone operating system.

TheStreet Ratings rates Microsoft 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, solid stock price performance, reasonable valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

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