3 Stocks Moving The Food & Beverage Industry Upward

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.

Two out of the three major indices traded up today The three major indices are trading lower today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 18 points (0.1%) at 17,652 as of Monday, Nov. 17, 2014, 3:25 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,424 issues advancing vs. 1,602 declining with 148 unchanged.

The Food & Beverage industry as a whole closed the day down 0.1% versus the S&P 500, which was up 0.1%. Top gainers within the Food & Beverage industry included Key Technology ( KTEC), up 3.2%, Concha y Toro Winery ( VCO), up 1.5%, RiceBran Technologies ( RIBT), up 2.5%, Gruma SAB de CV ( GMK), up 2.0% and Farmer Bros ( FARM), up 2.5%.

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

Gruma SAB de CV ( GMK) is one of the companies that pushed the Food & Beverage industry higher today. Gruma SAB de CV was up $0.85 (2.0%) to $43.67 on light volume. Throughout the day, 8,636 shares of Gruma SAB de CV exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 12,600 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $41.48-$43.69 after having opened the day at $41.48 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $42.82.

Gruma, S.A.B. de C.V., through its subsidiaries, produces, and sells corn flour, wheat flour, tortillas, and other related products. Gruma SAB de CV has a market cap of $4.7 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector. Shares are up 40.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are no analysts who rate Gruma SAB de CV a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Gruma SAB de CV as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, compelling growth in net income, notable return on equity, reasonable valuation levels and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on GMK go as follows:

  • Powered by its strong earnings growth of 72.50% and other important driving factors, this stock has surged by 55.66% over the past year, outperforming the rise in the S&P 500 Index during the same period. Turning to the future, naturally, any stock can fall in a major bear market. However, in almost any other environment, the stock should continue to move higher despite the fact that it has already enjoyed nice gains in the past year.
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Food Products industry. The net income increased by 71.0% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $47.57 million to $81.37 million.
  • The company's current return on equity greatly increased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of significant strength within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Food Products industry and the overall market, GRUMA SAB DE CV's return on equity significantly exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • 37.07% is the gross profit margin for GRUMA SAB DE CV 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 9.25% trails the industry average.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: Gruma SAB de CV 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.

At the close, Concha y Toro Winery ( VCO) was up $0.57 (1.5%) to $38.12 on average volume. Throughout the day, 3,127 shares of Concha y Toro Winery exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3,900 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $36.22-$38.40 after having opened the day at $36.28 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $37.55.

Vina Concha y Toro S.A. operates as a wine producing and exporting company in Chile. Concha y Toro Winery has a market cap of $1.4 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector. Shares are up 0.8% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are no analysts who rate Concha y Toro Winery 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 Concha y Toro Winery as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, reasonable valuation levels and expanding profit margins. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on VCO go as follows:

  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 1.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 25.4%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • VINA CONCHA Y TORO SA reported significant earnings per share improvement 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 year. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, VINA CONCHA Y TORO SA increased its bottom line by earning $1.69 versus $1.67 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($2.28 versus $1.69).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Beverages industry. The net income increased by 169.2% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $6.20 million to $16.69 million.
  • 39.97% is the gross profit margin for VINA CONCHA Y TORO SA 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 6.44% trails the industry average.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: Concha y Toro Winery 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.

Key Technology ( KTEC) was another company that pushed the Food & Beverage industry higher today. Key Technology was up $0.40 (3.2%) to $13.00 on light volume. Throughout the day, 625 shares of Key Technology exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4,200 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $12.76-$13.00 after having opened the day at $12.76 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $12.60.

Key Technology, Inc. designs, manufactures, sells, and services process automation systems integrating electro-optical inspection, sorting, and process systems in the United States and internationally. Key Technology has a market cap of $81.9 million and is part of the consumer goods sector. Shares are down 12.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are no analysts who rate Key Technology a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Key Technology as a hold. Among the primary strengths of the company is its solid financial position based on a variety of debt and liquidity measures that we have evaluated. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on KTEC go as follows:

  • KTEC's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.08 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. Although the company had a strong debt-to-equity ratio, its quick ratio of 0.89 is somewhat weak and could be cause for future problems.
  • KTEC, with its decline in revenue, underperformed when compared the industry average of 2.4%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues fell by 20.6%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • KEY TECHNOLOGY INC 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 reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. We feel it is likely to report a decline in earnings in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, KEY TECHNOLOGY INC increased its bottom line by earning $0.66 versus $0.09 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 77.3% in earnings ($0.15 versus $0.66).
  • The gross profit margin for KEY TECHNOLOGY INC is currently lower than what is desirable, coming in at 31.25%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of -6.46% is significantly below that of the industry average.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to $0.38 million or 71.49% 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.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: Key Technology 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.

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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