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Tickers in this Article: MTSI, FEIC, ONNN, MFLX, COHR, PKE, ASML
The market is doing well so far today. The Nasdaq is up 2.2%; the S&P 500 is trading up 2%; and the Dow has increased 1.8%.

Underperforming the market overall, the Semiconductors sector (XLK) is up 2.2%, and these are its current biggest movers:
CompanyMarket CapPercentage Change
M\x2FA-COM Technology Solutions Holdings (Nasdaq:MTSI)$757.4 million-22.5%
FEI Company (Nasdaq:FEIC)$1.77 billion+11%
ON Semiconductor Corp. (Nasdaq:ONNN)$3.11 billion-6.8%
Multi-Fineline Electronix, Inc. (Nasdaq:MFLX)$645 million+5.2%
Coherent, Inc. (Nasdaq:COHR)$1.11 billion+5%
Park Electrochemical Corp. (NYSE:PKE)$546.5 million+4.8%
ASML Holding N.V. (ADR) (Nasdaq:ASML)$23.45 billion+4.2%
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M\x2FA-COM Technology Solutions (Nasdaq:MTSI) is currently trading at $12.95 per share, after a steep drop of 22.5%. With 351,001 shares changing hands so far today, the company's volume is 12.9 times its current three-month average. High volume indicates a lot of investor interest while low volume indicates the opposite. A company's value as an investment is more easily estimated using valuation ratios such as the price to earnings (P/E) ratio, the price to earnings growth (PEG) ratio, the price to sales (P/S) ratio, the price to book (P/B) ratio, and the dividend yield. The capitalization ratio is calculated by dividing long-term debt by the sum of long-term debt and shareholders' equity. MTSI's capitalization ratio is 30.9%. A low level of debt and a healthy proportion of equity in a company's capital structure is an indication of financial fitness.

FEI (Nasdaq:FEIC) is currently at $51.82 per share after a dramatic increase of 11%. So far today, 564,063 shares of the company's stock have changed hands. Yesterday's volume was only 558,061 shares. Volume is an important indicator in technical analysis as it is used to measure the worth of a market move. If the markets have made a strong price move either up or down the perceived strength of that move depends on the volume for that period. The higher the volume during that price move the more significant the move. Investment valuation ratios provide investors with an estimation, albeit a simplistic one, of the value of a stock. The debt-equity (D/E) ratio compares the total liabilities for a company to its total shareholder equity. FEIC has a low debt-equity ratio of 12%. This shows that the company's assets are financed primarily through equity. The D/E ratio percentage provides a much more dramatic perspective on a company's leverage position than the debt ratio percentage.

At $6.38, ON (Nasdaq:ONNN) has slipped 6.8%. The company's volume is currently 23 million shares for the day, 3.3 times the average daily volume. Volume is used to evaluate how meaningful the price movement of a stock is. When estimating the value of a particular investment, valuation ratios provide a good basis for assessing the value of an individual stock. The price/book value ratio, often expressed simply as "price-to-book", provides investors a way to compare the market value, or what they are paying for each share, to a conservative measure of the value of the firm. ONNN has a P/B ratio of 1.92 which shows that its share price is higher than its book value. This implies that investors expect management to create more value from a given set of assets and/or that the market value of the firm's assets is significantly higher than their accounting value. To put things in perspective, should be made among companies in the same industry rather than across industries. SEE: How Buybacks Warps The Price-To-Book Ratio

Rising 5.2%, Multi-Fineline Electronix (Nasdaq:MFLX) is currently trading at $28.56 per share. The company is currently trading a volume of 24,611 shares. Volume is an important indicator because it indicates how significant a price shift is. Investors can use valuation ratios as tools to estimate what kind of deal a particular investment is. A simple P/E ratio can reveal the stock's real market value and show how the valuation compares to its industry group or a benchmark like the S&P 500 Index. MFLX's P/E ratio is 17.5. To determine the P/E ratio, an investor divides the market price of the stock by the earnings-per-share (EPS) of the stock. SEE: Investment Valuation Ratios: Price/Earnings Ratio

Coherent (Nasdaq:COHR) has risen 5% to hit a current price of $49.24 per share. So far today, the company's volume is 17,714 shares, 0.2 times the current three-month average. Price change alone is not enough to know how a stock is doing. Volume is an important secondary indicator used to confirm trends suggested by price movement. In making a decision about a potential or existing investment, valuation ratios are useful as a basis for seeing whether the stock price is too high, reasonable, or a bargain. The debt ratio measures the leverage of a company, and a company's leverage is a good way to assess risk. COHR has a low debt ratio of 25.5%. A low debt ratio means the company has more available cash flow. However, one thing to note with this ratio: it isn't a pure measure of a company's debt (or indebtedness), as it also includes operational liabilities, such as accounts payable and taxes payable.

Park (NYSE:PKE) has risen 4.8% and is currently trading at $27.53 per share. The company's volume is currently 9,812 shares. At this rate, trading activity will likely be down from yesterday when 37,255 shares changed hands. Volume indicates the level of interest that investors have in a company at its current price. Investors can make use of valuation ratios to estimate whether a stock is fairly valued. While measuring a price/earnings ratio (P/E ratio) is a popular valuation technique, the measure cannot be calculated for companies without earnings, so some investors analyze the price/sales ratio. PKE's P/S ratio of 2.6 is on the high side. In young companies, a high P/S ratio is a sign of sales growth that is expected to turn into earnings and cash flow. It is important to keep in mind when looking at the P/S ratio that just because a company is generating revenues, this does not mean that the company is profitable, and in the long run, profits drive stock prices.

ASML Holding N.V (Nasdaq:ASML) is up 4.2% to reach a current price of $58.20 per share. The company's volume is currently 860,186 shares for the day, 0.3 times the average daily volume. If a stock price makes a big move up or down, volume lets us know the significance of that move. Valuation ratios like the price to earnings (P/E) ratio, the price to earnings growth (PEG) ratio, the price to sales (P/S) ratio, the price to book (P/B) ratio, and the dividend yield are useful in determining how attractive a potential or existing investment is. A company's capitalization (not to be confused with its market capitalization) is the term used to describe the makeup of a company's permanent or long-term capital, which consists of both long-term debt and shareholders' equity. ASML has a fairly low capitalization ratio of 15.7%. Investors generally consider a company with low debt and high equity levels is a good quality investment. The capitalization ratio is one of the more meaningful debt ratios because it focuses on the relationship of debt liabilities as a component of a company's total capital base, which is the capital raised by shareholders and lenders.

The Bottom Line The nature of the market is such that stocks will have good days and bad days. Paying close attention to the previous ratios will help you identify key times to adjust your strategy. Keep in mind that all these ratios should be compared against historical numbers and industry information in order to get a more complete picture.

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