3 Basic Materials Stocks Pushing The 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.

All three major indices are trading down today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 8 points (0.0%) at 18,244 as of Friday, May 15, 2015, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,559 issues advancing vs. 1,400 declining with 174 unchanged.

The Basic Materials sector currently sits up 0.1% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.1%. Top gainers within the sector include Continental Resources ( CLR), up 3.0%, PetroChina ( PTR), up 2.6%, ArcelorMittal ( MT), up 2.1%, Praxair ( PX), up 1.6% and E I du Pont de Nemours & Company ( DD), up 1.5%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Enterprise Products Partners ( EPD), down 1.4%, Marathon Petroleum ( MPC), down 1.3%, Statoil ASA ( STO), down 1.2%, Ecopetrol ( EC), down 1.0% and Phillips 66 ( PSX), down 0.9%.

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

3. Potash Corp of Saskatchewan ( POT) is one of the companies pushing the Basic Materials sector higher today. As of noon trading, Potash Corp of Saskatchewan is up $0.58 (1.8%) to $32.87 on average volume. Thus far, 2.8 million shares of Potash Corp of Saskatchewan exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.9 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $32.17-$32.89 after having opened the day at $32.30 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $32.29.

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Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc., together with its subsidiaries, produces and sells fertilizers and related industrial and feed products worldwide. The company operates in three segments: Potash, Nitrogen, and Phosphate. Potash Corp of Saskatchewan has a market cap of $26.9 billion and is part of the chemicals industry. Shares are down 9.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 7 analysts who rate Potash Corp of Saskatchewan a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Potash Corp of Saskatchewan as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, expanding profit margins and growth in earnings per share. 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. Get the full Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Mosaic ( MOS) is up $0.91 (2.0%) to $46.47 on average volume. Thus far, 2.0 million shares of Mosaic exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $45.60-$46.48 after having opened the day at $45.92 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $45.56.

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The Mosaic Company produces and markets concentrated phosphate and potash crop nutrients for the agricultural industry worldwide. It operates through two segments, Phosphates and Potash. The Phosphates segment owns and operates mines in Florida. Mosaic has a market cap of $15.8 billion and is part of the chemicals industry. Shares are down 0.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 9 analysts who rate Mosaic a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Mosaic 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 impressive record of earnings per share growth. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including poor profit margins and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself. Get the full Mosaic Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Kinder Morgan ( KMI) is up $0.36 (0.8%) to $42.50 on average volume. Thus far, 3.6 million shares of Kinder Morgan exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 9.0 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $42.22-$42.58 after having opened the day at $42.31 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $42.14.

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Kinder Morgan, Inc. operates as an energy infrastructure and energy company in North America. The company operates through Natural Gas Pipelines, CO2, Terminals, Products Pipelines, Kinder Morgan Canada, and Other segments. Kinder Morgan has a market cap of $91.4 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 0.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 12 analysts who rate Kinder Morgan a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Kinder Morgan as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat weak growth in earnings per share. Get the full Kinder Morgan Ratings Report now.

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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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