3 Chemicals Stocks Driving The Industry 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.

One out of the three major indices traded up today 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 down 10.22 points (-0.1%) at 17,540 as of Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2015, 4:20 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,528 issues advancing vs. 1,554 declining with 135 unchanged.

The Chemicals industry as a whole closed the day down 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which was up 0.3%. Top gainers within the Chemicals industry included NL Industries ( NL), up 8.4%, China Green Agriculture ( CGA), up 2.0%, Marrone Bio Innovations ( MBII), up 2.7%, Lightbridge ( LTBR), up 3.4% and Amyris ( AMRS), up 3.0%.

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

Marrone Bio Innovations ( MBII) is one of the companies that pushed the Chemicals industry higher today. Marrone Bio Innovations was up $0.05 (2.7%) to $1.93 on light volume. Throughout the day, 18,416 shares of Marrone Bio Innovations exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 147,600 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $1.88-$1.97 after having opened the day at $1.90 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $1.88.

Marrone Bio Innovations, Inc. provides bio-based pest management and plant health products for the crop protection, water treatment, and other target markets in the United States and internationally. Marrone Bio Innovations has a market cap of $48.1 million and is part of the basic materials sector. Shares are down 45.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are no analysts who rate Marrone Bio Innovations a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Marrone Bio Innovations as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its feeble growth in its earnings per share and deteriorating net income.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on MBII go as follows:

  • MARRONE BIO INNOVTIONS 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. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 86.2% in earnings (-$1.75 versus -$0.94).
  • 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 Chemicals industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 533.6% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$1.64 million to -$10.39 million.
  • MBII, with its decline in revenue, slightly underperformed the industry average of 11.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues fell by 19.4%. Weakness in the company's revenue seems to have hurt the bottom line, decreasing earnings per share.
  • Compared to other companies in the Chemicals industry and the overall market, MARRONE BIO INNOVTIONS's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • Despite any intermediate fluctuations, we have only bad news to report on this stock's performance over the last year: it has tumbled by 80.76%, worse than the S&P 500's performance. Consistent with the plunge in the stock price, the company's earnings per share are down 455.55% compared to the year-earlier quarter.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: Marrone Bio Innovations Ratings Report

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At the close, China Green Agriculture ( CGA) was up $0.04 (2.0%) to $2.03 on light volume. Throughout the day, 25,925 shares of China Green Agriculture exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 130,400 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $2.01-$2.05 after having opened the day at $2.03 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $1.99.

China Green Agriculture, Inc., through its subsidiaries, engages in the research, development, production, distribution, and sale of various types of fertilizers and agricultural products primarily in the People's Republic of China. China Green Agriculture has a market cap of $69.1 million and is part of the basic materials sector. Shares are up 30.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are no analysts who rate China Green Agriculture a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

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TheStreet Ratings rates China Green Agriculture 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 attractive valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company's return on equity has been disappointing.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on CGA go as follows:

  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 11.5%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues rose by 13.1%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • CGA's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.07 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. To add to this, CGA has a quick ratio of 2.25, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.
  • 37.25% is the gross profit margin for CHINA GREEN AGRICULTURE INC which we consider to be strong. Despite the high profit margin, it has decreased significantly from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 12.47% trails the industry average.
  • In its most recent trading session, CGA 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. Despite the fact that it has already risen in the past year, there is currently no conclusive evidence that warrants the purchase or sale of this stock.
  • 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. In comparison to the other companies in the Chemicals industry and the overall market, CHINA GREEN AGRICULTURE INC's return on equity is significantly below that of the industry average and is below that of the S&P 500.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: China Green Agriculture Ratings Report

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NL Industries ( NL) was another company that pushed the Chemicals industry higher today. NL Industries was up $0.44 (8.4%) to $5.68 on average volume. Throughout the day, 31,887 shares of NL Industries exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 24,500 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $5.52-$6.07 after having opened the day at $6.00 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $5.24.

NL Industries, Inc., through its subsidiary, CompX International Inc., operates in the component products industry in the United States and internationally. NL Industries has a market cap of $293.1 million and is part of the basic materials sector. Shares are down 39.1% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are no analysts who rate NL Industries a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates NL Industries 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 find that the stock has had a generally disappointing performance in the past year.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on NL go as follows:

  • The revenue growth came in higher than the industry average of 3.6%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 8.2%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
  • NL 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. Along with this, the company maintains a quick ratio of 4.42, which clearly demonstrates the ability to cover short-term cash needs.
  • 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 Commercial Services & Supplies industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, NL INDUSTRIES has underperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has exceeded that of the S&P 500.
  • The gross profit margin for NL INDUSTRIES is currently lower than what is desirable, coming in at 33.95%. Regardless of NL's low profit margin, it has managed to increase from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, NL's net profit margin of 36.00% significantly outperformed against the industry.
  • NL has underperformed the S&P 500 Index, declining 22.58% from its price level of one year ago. 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.

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

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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.

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