All three major indices are trading down today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 6 points (0.0%) at 16,147 as of Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016, 11:55 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,481 issues advancing vs. 1,444 declining with 153 unchanged.

The Real Estate industry currently sits up 0.5% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.3%. Top gainers within the industry include VEREIT ( VER), up 2.6%, Host Hotels & Resorts ( HST), up 2.4%, UDR ( UDR), up 2.4%, HCP ( HCP), up 2.2% and Ventas ( VTR), up 1.7%. On the negative front, top decliners within the industry include CBRE Group ( CBG), down 2.3%, American Tower ( AMT), down 1.6%, Extra Space Storage ( EXR), down 1.2%, Equinix ( EQIX), down 1.1% and Equity Residential ( EQR), down 1.1%.

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

3. Federal Realty Investment ( FRT) is one of the companies pushing the Real Estate industry higher today. As of noon trading, Federal Realty Investment is up $1.43 (0.9%) to $151.84 on light volume. Thus far, 185,968 shares of Federal Realty Investment exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 618,400 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $149.99-$151.84 after having opened the day at $150.97 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $150.41.

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Federal Realty Investment Trust operates as a real estate investment trust, which engages in the ownership, management, development, and redevelopment of retail and mixed-use properties. Federal Realty Investment has a market cap of $10.6 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are up 3.0% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 5 analysts who rate Federal Realty Investment a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 9 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Federal Realty Investment as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company is trading at a premium valuation based on our review of its current price compared to such things as earnings and book value. Get the full Federal Realty Investment Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, Essex Property ( ESS) is up $3.36 (1.6%) to $211.68 on light volume. Thus far, 150,575 shares of Essex Property exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 448,700 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $208.15-$211.68 after having opened the day at $209.38 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $208.32.

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Essex Property Trust, Inc. operates as a self-administered and self-managed real estate investment trust in the United States. It engages in the ownership, operation, management, acquisition, development, and redevelopment of apartment communities, as well as commercial properties. Essex Property has a market cap of $14.1 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are down 13.0% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 8 analysts who rate Essex Property a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Essex Property as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and notable return on equity. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself. Get the full Essex Property Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Digital Realty ( DLR) is up $0.96 (1.2%) to $80.56 on average volume. Thus far, 478,701 shares of Digital Realty exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.2 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $79.87-$80.62 after having opened the day at $80.04 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $79.60.

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Digital Realty Trust, Inc., a real estate investment trust (REIT), through its controlling interest in Digital Realty Trust, L.P., engages in the ownership, acquisition, development, redevelopment, and management of technology-related real estate. Digital Realty has a market cap of $11.7 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are up 5.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 9 analysts who rate Digital Realty a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Digital Realty as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full Digital Realty 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 real estate industry could consider iShares Dow Jones US Real Estate ( IYR) while those bearish on the real estate industry could consider ProShares Short Real Estate Fund ( REK).