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Tickers in this Article: TPC, ACM, BLT, AMRC, JOY, THO, CNH
It's been a good morning for the market. The Nasdaq has increased 0.8%; the S&P 500 has climbed 0.7%; and the Dow is trading up 0.6%. The capital goods sector is the category of stocks related to the manufacture or distribution of goods. The sector is diverse, containing companies that manufacture machinery used to create capital goods, electrical equipment, aerospace and defense, engineering and construction projects. It is also referred to as the "industrials sector". Performance in the capital goods sector is sensitive to fluctuations in the business cycle. Because it relies heavily on manufacturing, the sector does well when the economy is booming or expanding. As economic conditions worsen, the demand for capital goods drops off, usually lowering the prices of stocks in the sector.

Outperforming the market overall, the Capital Goods sector (XLI) is up 1.4% and its biggest movers so far today are:
CompanyMarket CapPercentage Change
Perini Corporation (NYSE:TPC)8.6 million-18.5%
AECOM Technology Corp (NYSE:ACM).8 billion+17.6%
Blount International, Inc. (NYSE:BLT)6.7 million-9.6%
Ameresco Inc (NYSE:AMRC)8.1 million-6.8%
Joy Global Inc. (NYSE:JOY).55 billion+5.2%
Thor Industries, Inc. (NYSE:THO).64 billion+4.5%
CNH Global NV (ADR) (NYSE:CNH).57 billion+3.9%
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Perini (NYSE:TPC) is at a share price of $9.27 after a sharp decline of 18.5%. The company's volume for the day so far is 433,632 shares, 2.1 times the average volume over the last three months. High volume indicates a lot of investor interest while low volume indicates the opposite. While investment valuation ratios are useful tools in estimating the attractiveness of an investment, remember that it is important to look at a company's historical performance and compare the company ratios with its competitors and industry overall. One of the most important estimates of stock market valuation is the price/earnings ratio (P/E ratio). TPC's P/E ratio of 7.0 falls below the industry average of 8.81. A low P/E might arise due to substantial inherent risk of the firm and its operations, poor return on equity, or improper valuation of the market. From the investor's perspective, a stock with a lower ratio is relatively cheaper than a stock with a higher ratio. SEE: How To Find P/E And PEG Ratios

AECOM (NYSE:ACM) rose a significant 17.6% to reach $18.80 per share. So far today, the company's volume is 1.4 million shares. This is greater than yesterday's volume of 1.2 million shares. Volume is used to evaluate how meaningful the price movement of a stock is. A company's investment value can be 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 debt ratio shows the proportion of assets that a company is financing through debt. ACM has a debt ratio of 59.5%. 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.

After a decline of 9.6%, Blount International (NYSE:BLT) has hit a share price of $12.68. At 498,157 shares, the company's volume so far today is 2.4 times the average daily volume. Volume is also used as a secondary indicator to help confirm what the price movement is suggesting. Investment valuation ratios provide investors with an estimation, albeit a simplistic one, of the value of a stock. The price/sales ratio measures a company's stock market value by its total revenues or alternatively, a company's price per share by its revenue per share. BLT has a P/S ratio of 0.93, on the low end. The lower the P/S ratio, the more reasonably price the stock, all else being equal. All things being equal, a low P/S ratio is good news for investors, while a very high one can be a warning sign.

Ameresco (NYSE:AMRC) has fallen 6.8% and is currently trading at $11.48 per share. The company is currently trading a volume of 200,580 shares. If a stock price makes a big move up or down, volume lets us know the significance of that move. Valuation ratios include 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 measures the debt component of the capital structure, or capitalization of a company (i.e., the sum of long-term debt liabilities and shareholder equity) to support operations and growth. AMRC's capitalization ratio is 44.8%. This ratio is considered to be one of the more meaningful of the "debt" ratios - it delivers the key insight into the use of leverage by a company.

Joy Global (NYSE:JOY) has risen 5.2% to hit a current price of $55.17 per share. So far today, the company's volume is 1.2 million shares, in keeping with its current three-month average. In technical analysis, trading volume is used to determine the strength of a market indicator. Investment valuation ratios can be very useful in estimating whether a stock price is too high, reasonable or a bargain investment opportunity. To a large degree, the debt-equity (D/E) ratio provides another vantage point on a company's leverage position, in this case, comparing total liabilities to shareholders' equity, as opposed to total assets in the debt ratio. The D/E ratio for JOY is 70%. This easy-to-calculate ratio provides a general indication of a company's equity-liability relationship and is helpful to investors looking for a quick take on a company's leverage.

Increasing 4.5%, Thor Industries (NYSE:THO) is trading at $32.45 per share. So far today, 313,835 shares of the company's stock have changed hands. Volume indicates the level of interest that investors have in a company at its current price. When estimating the value of a particular investment, valuation ratios provide a good basis for assessing the value of an individual stock. As with most ratios, comparisons of company price/earnings to growth ratios (PEG ratios) are most appropriate for similar companies. THO has a PEG ratio of 1.23, which is consistent with the industry average. While P/E ratios are important indicators of market value, a high P/E in and of itself is not bad because it may indicate a company whose earnings are growing very rapidly, so many investors look at the PEG ratio in order to get an idea of whether or not a particular P/E ratio is justified by underlying earnings growth.

CNH Global NV (NYSE:CNH) is up 3.9% to reach a current price of $41.48 per share. So far today, the company's volume is 73,986 shares, 0.1 times its current daily average. The trading volume for a stock indicates the level of investor interest. Understanding investment valuation ratios allows an investor to assess the true value of an individual stock. The price/book value ratio provides a way of evaluating whether a stock is relatively cheap or expensive. CNH has a P/B ratio of 1.18 which shows that its share price is higher than its book value. This high share price relative to asset value is likely to indicate that the company has been earning a very high return on its assets. To put things in perspective, should be made among companies in the same industry rather than across industries. SEE: Investment Valuation Ratios: Price/Book Value Ratio

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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