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 traded up today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 225 points (1.3%) at 17,417 as of Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015, 4:20 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 2,093 issues advancing vs. 1,001 declining with 116 unchanged.

The Basic Materials sector as a whole closed the day down 0.5% versus the S&P 500, which was up 1.0%. Top gainers within the Basic Materials sector included Quest Rare Minerals ( QRM), up 10.2%, Ossen Innovation ( OSN), up 3.2%, Saratoga Resources ( SARA), up 4.9%, Lilis Energy ( LLEX), up 3.9% and Lucas Energy ( LEI), up 3.3%.

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

Saratoga Resources ( SARA) is one of the companies that pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today. Saratoga Resources was up $0.01 (4.9%) to $0.16 on light volume. Throughout the day, 48,740 shares of Saratoga Resources exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 148,600 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $0.14-$0.18 after having opened the day at $0.16 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $0.15.

Saratoga Resources, Inc., an independent oil and natural gas company, acquires, exploits, produces, and develops crude oil and natural gas properties in the United States. Saratoga Resources has a market cap of $5.0 million and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 29.7% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there is 1 analyst who rates Saratoga Resources a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Saratoga Resources 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 generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on SARA go as follows:

  • The debt-to-equity ratio is very high at 14.32 and currently higher than the industry average, implying increased risk associated with the management of debt levels within the company. Along with the unfavorable debt-to-equity ratio, SARA maintains a poor quick ratio of 0.78, which illustrates the inability to avoid short-term cash problems.
  • 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 Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry and the overall market, SARATOGA RESOURCES INC's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • SARATOGA RESOURCES 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. The company has reported a trend of declining earnings per share over the past two years. During the past fiscal year, SARATOGA RESOURCES INC reported poor results of -$0.85 versus -$0.13 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 Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 79.4% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$5.73 million to -$10.27 million.
  • Despite any intermediate fluctuations, we have only bad news to report on this stock's performance over the last year: it has tumbled by 81.49%, worse than the S&P 500's performance. Consistent with the plunge in the stock price, the company's earnings per share are down 73.68% 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.

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

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At the close, Ossen Innovation ( OSN) was up $0.02 (3.2%) to $0.65 on light volume. Throughout the day, 6,376 shares of Ossen Innovation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 29,300 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $0.64-$0.66 after having opened the day at $0.65 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $0.63.

Ossen Innovation Co., Ltd. manufactures and sells various plain surface prestressed steel materials, and rare earth coated and zinc coated prestressed steel materials in the People's Republic of China. Ossen Innovation has a market cap of $13.3 million and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 23.2% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are no analysts who rate Ossen Innovation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Ossen Innovation as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its attractive valuation levels and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, poor profit margins and weak operating cash flow.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on OSN go as follows:

  • OSN's debt-to-equity ratio of 0.75 is somewhat low overall, but it is high when compared to the industry average, implying that the management of the debt levels should be evaluated further. Despite the fact that OSN's debt-to-equity ratio is mixed in its results, the company's quick ratio of 1.53 is high and demonstrates strong liquidity.
  • OSSEN INNOVATION CO LTD -ADR 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, OSSEN INNOVATION CO LTD -ADR increased its bottom line by earning $0.18 versus $0.12 in the prior year.
  • Net operating cash flow has significantly decreased to -$2.31 million or 141.05% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
  • 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 Metals & Mining industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 72.1% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $1.68 million to $0.47 million.

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

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Quest Rare Minerals ( QRM) was another company that pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today. Quest Rare Minerals was up $0.01 (10.2%) to $0.09 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 522,724 shares of Quest Rare Minerals exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 109,700 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $0.08-$0.09 after having opened the day at $0.08 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $0.08.

Quest Rare Minerals has a market cap of $6.8 million and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 25.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

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.