Dow Today: UnitedHealth Group (UNH) Leads The Day Higher, Verizon Communications (VZ) 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 up 72 points (+0.4%) at 17,150 as of Thursday, Sep 4, 2014, 9:36 a.m. ET. During this time, 19.8 million shares of the 30 Dow components have changed hands vs. an average daily trading volume of 297.6 million. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,583 issues advancing vs. 1,095 declining with 255 unchanged.
  • EXCLUSIVE OFFER: Jim Cramer's Protégé, Dave Peltier, only buys Stocks Under $10 that he thinks could potentially double. See what he's trading today with a 14-day FREE pass.

The Dow component leading the way higher looks to be UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH), which is sporting a 63-cent gain (+0.7%) bringing the stock to $87.42. This single gain is lifting the Dow Jones Industrial Average by 4.77 points or roughly accounting for 6.6% of the Dow's overall gain. Volume for UnitedHealth Group currently sits at 164,836 shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 3.7 million shares.

UnitedHealth Group has a market cap of $83.94 billion and is part of the health care sector and health services industry. Shares are up 15.3% year-to-date as of Wednesday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 1.7%.

UnitedHealth Group Incorporated operates as a diversified health and well-being company in the United States.

TheStreet Ratings rates UnitedHealth Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in stock price during the past year, revenue growth, reasonable valuation levels, growth in earnings per share and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

Holding back the Dow today is Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ), which is lagging the broader Dow index with a 16-cent decline (-0.3%) bringing the stock to $49.72. Volume for Verizon Communications currently sits at 603,313 shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 13 million shares.

Verizon Communications has a market cap of $206.31 billion and is part of the technology sector and telecommunications industry. Shares are up 1.5% year-to-date as of Wednesday'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, compelling growth in net income, increase in stock price during the past year and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated.

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

null

More from Markets

Video: What Oprah's Content Partnership With Apple Means for the Rest of Tech

Video: What Oprah's Content Partnership With Apple Means for the Rest of Tech

REPLAY: Jim Cramer on the Markets, Oil, Starbucks, Tesla, Okta and Red Hat

REPLAY: Jim Cramer on the Markets, Oil, Starbucks, Tesla, Okta and Red Hat

Flashback Friday: The Market Movers

Flashback Friday: The Market Movers

OPEC Deal Doesn't Boost Production Enough to Drive Down Crude, Gasoline Prices

OPEC Deal Doesn't Boost Production Enough to Drive Down Crude, Gasoline Prices

Dow Posts First Gain in Nine Sessions; Oil Jumps

Dow Posts First Gain in Nine Sessions; Oil Jumps