3 Stocks Driving The Basic Materials 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 down today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 61.49 points (-0.4%) at 16,988 as of Friday, Sept. 12, 2014, 4:20 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 638 issues advancing vs. 2,470 declining with 106 unchanged.

The Basic Materials sector as a whole closed the day down 1.1% versus the S&P 500, which was down 0.6%. Top gainers within the Basic Materials sector included Timberline Resources ( TLR), up 8.4%, WSP Holdings ( WH), up 3.1%, PrimeEnergy ( PNRG), up 2.9%, United States Antimony ( UAMY), up 1.7% and Mines Management ( MGN), up 2.1%.

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

United States Antimony ( UAMY) is one of the companies that pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today. United States Antimony was up $0.02 (1.7%) to $1.18 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 69,283 shares of United States Antimony exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 29,700 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $1.15-$1.28 after having opened the day at $1.19 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $1.16.

United States Antimony Corporation produces and sells antimony, silver, gold, and zeolite products in the United States. United States Antimony has a market cap of $76.1 million and is part of the chemicals industry. Shares are down 41.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are no analysts who rate United States Antimony a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

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TheStreet Ratings rates United States Antimony as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its poor profit margins, weak operating cash flow and feeble growth in its earnings per share.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on UAMY go as follows:

  • The gross profit margin for U S ANTIMONY CORP is currently extremely low, coming in at 1.89%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of -18.67% is significantly below that of the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has decreased to $0.13 million or 44.49% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing the cash generation rate to the industry average, the firm's growth is significantly lower.
  • U S ANTIMONY CORP reported flat earnings per share in the most recent quarter. The company has reported a trend of declining earnings per share over the past two years. During the past fiscal year, U S ANTIMONY CORP reported poor results of -$0.03 versus -$0.01 in the prior year.
  • The company, on the basis of net income growth from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed compared to the Metals & Mining industry average, but is greater than that of the S&P 500. The net income increased by 18.1% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, going from -$0.52 million to -$0.42 million.
  • The return on equity has improved slightly when compared to the same quarter one year prior. This can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Metals & Mining industry and the overall market, U S ANTIMONY CORP's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: United States Antimony Ratings Report

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At the close, WSP Holdings ( WH) was up $0.02 (3.1%) to $0.67 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 37,740 shares of WSP Holdings exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 22,700 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $0.60-$0.67 after having opened the day at $0.65 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $0.65.

WSP Holdings Limited, together with its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells seamless oil country tubular goods. WSP Holdings has a market cap of $12.9 million and is part of the chemicals industry. Shares are down 76.2% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are no analysts who rate WSP Holdings a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

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

TheStreet Ratings rates WSP Holdings as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income, generally high debt management risk, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on WH go as follows:

  • WSP HOLDINGS LTD has experienced a steep decline in earnings per share in the most recent quarter in comparison to its performance from the same quarter a year ago. The company has suffered a declining pattern earnings per share over the past two years. During the past fiscal year, WSP HOLDINGS LTD reported poor results of -$4.12 versus -$3.30 in the prior year.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Energy Equipment & Services industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 55.5% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$16.61 million to -$25.83 million.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is very high at 6.75 and currently higher than the industry average, implying increased risk associated with the management of debt levels within the company. Along with this, the company manages to maintain a quick ratio of 0.33, which clearly demonstrates the inability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • 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 Energy Equipment & Services industry and the overall market, WSP HOLDINGS LTD's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for WSP HOLDINGS LTD is rather low; currently it is at 20.56%. Despite the low profit margin, it has increased significantly from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, WH's net profit margin of -21.64% significantly underperformed when compared to the industry average.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: WSP Holdings 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.

Timberline Resources ( TLR) was another company that pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today. Timberline Resources was up $0.01 (8.4%) to $0.08 on light volume. Throughout the day, 66,353 shares of Timberline Resources exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 180,000 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $0.06-$0.08 after having opened the day at $0.07 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $0.07.

Timberline Resources has a market cap of $5.5 million and is part of the chemicals industry. Shares are down 60.0% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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.

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