3 Stocks Pushing The Basic Materials Sector 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.

All three major indices are trading down today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 77 points (-0.4%) at 17,034 as of Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 824 issues advancing vs. 2,132 declining with 162 unchanged.

The Basic Materials sector currently is unchanged today versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.3%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Continental Resources ( CLR), down 1.3%, Statoil ASA ( STO), down 1.2%, Royal Dutch Shell ( RDS.B), down 1.1%, Chevron ( CVX), down 0.7% and China Petroleum & Chemical ( SNP), down 0.6%. Top gainers within the sector include Encana ( ECA), up 2.8%, EQT ( EQT), up 2.0% and Enbridge ( ENB), up 0.8%.

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

3. Air Products & Chemicals ( APD) is one of the companies pushing the Basic Materials sector lower today. As of noon trading, Air Products & Chemicals is down $1.76 (-1.3%) to $130.23 on light volume. Thus far, 345,966 shares of Air Products & Chemicals exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.3 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $130.21-$132.04 after having opened the day at $131.97 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $131.99.

Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. provides atmospheric gases, process and specialty gases, performance materials, equipment, and services worldwide. The company operates through four segments: Merchant Gases, Tonnage Gases, Electronics and Performance Materials, and Equipment and Energy. Air Products & Chemicals has a market cap of $28.2 billion and is part of the chemicals industry. Shares are up 18.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 5 analysts that rate Air Products & Chemicals a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Air Products & Chemicals as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, revenue growth, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity. Get the full Air Products & Chemicals 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, Williams Companies ( WMB) is down $0.39 (-0.7%) to $57.57 on light volume. Thus far, 1.9 million shares of Williams Companies exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 6.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $57.52-$58.08 after having opened the day at $58.00 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $57.96.

The Williams Companies, Inc. operates as an energy infrastructure company. Williams Companies has a market cap of $44.2 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are up 50.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 7 analysts that rate Williams Companies a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Williams Companies as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, generally higher debt management risk and disappointing return on equity. Get the full Williams Companies 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, Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras ( PBR) is down $0.38 (-2.1%) to $17.97 on heavy volume. Thus far, 19.9 million shares of Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 23.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $17.94-$18.56 after having opened the day at $18.37 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $18.35.

Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. - Petrobras operates as an integrated oil and gas company in Brazil and internationally. Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras has a market cap of $126.4 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are up 33.2% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 6 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance and attractive valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins. Get the full Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras 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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