3 Stocks Pushing The Health Services Industry Lower

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 Health Services industry as a whole was unchanged today versus the S&P 500, which was down 0.2%. Laggards within the Health Services industry included SunLink Health Systems ( SSY), down 3.3%, Vision-Sciences ( VSCI), down 4.3%, CAS Medical Systems ( CASM), down 2.5%, Semler Scientific ( SMLR), down 6.0% and Akers Biosciences ( AKER), down 3.1%.

TheStreet Ratings Group would like to highlight 3 stocks that pushed the industry lower today:

Akers Biosciences ( AKER) is one of the companies that pushed the Health Services industry lower today. Akers Biosciences was down $0.10 (3.1%) to $3.15 on light volume. Throughout the day, 5,325 shares of Akers Biosciences exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 15,200 shares. The stock ranged in price between $3.07-$3.15 after having opened the day at $3.15 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $3.25.

Akers Biosciences has a market cap of $15.2 million and is part of the health care sector. Shares are down 54.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there is 1 analyst who rates Akers Biosciences a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

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At the close, CAS Medical Systems ( CASM) was down $0.04 (2.5%) to $1.53 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 55,908 shares of CAS Medical Systems exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 21,900 shares. The stock ranged in price between $1.50-$1.65 after having opened the day at $1.60 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $1.57.

CAS Medical Systems, Inc., a medical technology company, develops, manufactures, and markets medical devices for non-invasive patient monitoring in the United States and internationally. CAS Medical Systems has a market cap of $30.6 million and is part of the health care sector. Shares are down 7.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there is 1 analyst who rates CAS Medical Systems a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

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TheStreet Ratings rates CAS Medical Systems as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its disappointing return on equity and generally high debt management risk.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on CASM go as follows:

  • Return on equity has greatly decreased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of major weakness within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Health Care Equipment & Supplies industry and the overall market, CAS MEDICAL SYSTEMS INC's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio of 1.24 is relatively high when compared with the industry average, suggesting a need for better debt level management. Despite the company's weak debt-to-equity ratio, the company has managed to keep a very strong quick ratio of 2.78, which shows the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • 40.80% is the gross profit margin for CAS MEDICAL SYSTEMS INC which we consider to be strong. Regardless of CASM's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, CASM's net profit margin of -38.91% significantly underperformed when compared to the industry average.
  • Compared to where it was 12 months ago, the stock is up, but it has so far lagged the appreciation in the S&P 500. Turning our attention to the future direction of the stock, we do not believe this stock offers ample reward opportunity to compensate for the risks, despite the fact that it rose over the past year.
  • CAS MEDICAL SYSTEMS INC has improved earnings per share by 40.9% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, CAS MEDICAL SYSTEMS INC reported poor results of -$0.74 versus -$0.64 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings (-$0.48 versus -$0.74).

You can view the full analysis from the report here: CAS Medical Systems Ratings Report

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Vision-Sciences ( VSCI) was another company that pushed the Health Services industry lower today. Vision-Sciences was down $0.04 (4.3%) to $0.90 on average volume. Throughout the day, 36,216 shares of Vision-Sciences exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 32,900 shares. The stock ranged in price between $0.90-$0.97 after having opened the day at $0.97 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $0.94.

Vision-Sciences, Inc., through its subsidiaries, designs, develops, manufactures, and markets endoscopy products. It operates through Medical and Industrial segments. Vision-Sciences has a market cap of $45.2 million and is part of the health care sector. Shares are down 6.0% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Vision-Sciences as a sell. Among the areas we feel are negative, one of the most important has been a generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself.

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Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on VSCI go as follows:

  • In its most recent trading session, VSCI has closed at a price level that was not very different from its closing price of one year earlier. This is probably due to its weak earnings growth as well as other mixed factors. This company's share value has not moved any higher or lower since its value 12 months ago, and we feel the risks associated with investing in this company will outweigh any potential future gains.
  • 35.05% is the gross profit margin for VISION-SCIENCES INC which we consider to be strong. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Regardless of the strong results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of -52.69% is in-line with the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to -$0.95 million or 33.40% when compared to the same quarter last year. The firm also exceeded the industry average cash flow growth rate of 2.29%.
  • VISION-SCIENCES INC has improved earnings per share by 20.0% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past two years. During the past fiscal year, VISION-SCIENCES INC continued to lose money by earning -$0.16 versus -$0.22 in the prior year.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has exceeded that of the S&P 500 and greatly outperformed compared to the Health Care Equipment & Supplies industry average. The net income increased by 18.8% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from -$2.43 million to -$1.98 million.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: Vision-Sciences Ratings Report

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

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