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 Technology sector as a whole closed the day up 0.3% versus the S&P 500, which was up 1.3%. Laggards within the Technology sector included Sutron ( STRN), down 2.6%, Video Display ( VIDE), down 1.7%, LookSmart ( LOOK), down 3.1%, Data I/O ( DAIO), down 2.9% and Authentidate ( ADAT), down 6.1%.

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

Data I/O ( DAIO) is one of the companies that pushed the Technology sector lower today. Data I/O was down $0.09 (2.9%) to $3.01 on light volume. Throughout the day, 3,031 shares of Data I/O exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 13,900 shares. The stock ranged in price between $3.01-$3.17 after having opened the day at $3.07 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $3.10.

Data I/O Corporation designs, manufactures, and sells programming systems for electronic device manufacturers worldwide. The company's programming system products are used to program integrated circuits (ICs) with the specific data necessary for the ICs. Data I/O has a market cap of $23.8 million and is part of the telecommunications industry. Shares are up 18.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Data I/O as a hold. 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 and compelling growth in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including weak operating cash flow and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on DAIO go as follows:

  • DAIO's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 5.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 6.2%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • DAIO has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, which we consider to be a relatively favorable sign. To add to this, DAIO has a quick ratio of 2.37, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • The gross profit margin for DATA I/O CORP is rather high; currently it is at 56.83%. Regardless of DAIO's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, DAIO's net profit margin of 7.98% compares favorably to the industry average.
  • In its most recent trading session, DAIO 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. The fact that the stock is now selling for less than others in its industry in relation to its current earnings is not reason enough to justify a buy rating at this time.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to $0.02 million or 94.58% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: Data I/O Ratings Report

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At the close, LookSmart ( LOOK) was down $0.04 (3.1%) to $1.23 on light volume. Throughout the day, 3,482 shares of LookSmart exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 31,400 shares. The stock ranged in price between $1.20-$1.29 after having opened the day at $1.21 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $1.27.

LookSmart, Ltd. provides search and display advertising network solutions in the United States, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. LookSmart has a market cap of $7.3 million and is part of the telecommunications industry. Shares are down 38.0% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates LookSmart as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its unimpressive growth in net income, disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow and generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on LOOK go as follows:

  • 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 Internet Software & Services industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 83.7% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$1.01 million to -$1.86 million.
  • 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 Internet Software & Services industry and the overall market, LOOKSMART LTD's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to -$1.06 million or 69.77% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
  • Despite any intermediate fluctuations, we have only bad news to report on this stock's performance over the last year: it has tumbled by 34.41%, worse than the S&P 500's performance. Consistent with the plunge in the stock price, the company's earnings per share are down 77.77% compared to the year-earlier quarter. Naturally, the overall market trend is bound to be a significant factor. However, in one sense, the stock's sharp decline last year is a positive for future investors, making it cheaper (in proportion to its earnings over the past year) than most other stocks in its industry. But due to other concerns, we feel the stock is still not a good buy right now.
  • LOOKSMART 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. This company has not demonstrated a clear trend in earnings over the past 2 years, making it difficult to accurately predict earnings for the coming year. During the past fiscal year, LOOKSMART LTD continued to lose money by earning -$0.93 versus -$1.92 in the prior year.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: LookSmart Ratings Report

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Sutron ( STRN) was another company that pushed the Technology sector lower today. Sutron was down $0.14 (2.6%) to $5.06 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1,000 shares of Sutron exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4,800 shares. The stock ranged in price between $5.06-$5.06 after having opened the day at $5.06 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $5.20.

Sutron Corporation provides real-time data collection and control products, systems and applications software, and professional services for the hydrological, meteorological, and oceanic monitoring markets. Sutron has a market cap of $26.3 million and is part of the telecommunications industry. Shares are up 1.2% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Sutron as a hold. 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 and increase in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow.

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Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on STRN go as follows:

  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 5.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 20.1%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • STRN has no debt to speak of therefore resulting in a debt-to-equity ratio of zero, which we consider to be a relatively favorable sign. To add to this, STRN has a quick ratio of 2.44, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • 40.53% is the gross profit margin for SUTRON CORP 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 2.69% trails the industry average.
  • The company's current return on equity has slightly decreased from the same quarter one year prior. This implies a minor weakness in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Electronic Equipment, Instruments & Components industry and the overall market, SUTRON CORP's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to -$0.17 million or 107.54% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: Sutron Ratings Report

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