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UnitedHealth Group Inc (UNH): Today's Featured Health Services Laggard

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

UnitedHealth Group ( UNH) pushed the Health Services industry lower today making it today's featured Health Services laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.5%. By the end of trading, UnitedHealth Group fell 84 cents (-1.4%) to $57.13 on average volume. Throughout the day, six million shares of UnitedHealth Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 6.4 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $56.84-$58.15 after having opened the day at $58.15 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $57.97. Other companies within the Health Services industry that declined today were: Escalon Medical Corporation ( ESMC), down 22.4%, Graymark Healthcare ( GRMH), down 12.5%, Neostem ( NBS), down 8%, and BSD Medical Corporation ( BSDM), down 7.7%.

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UnitedHealth Group Incorporated operates as a diversified health and well-being company in the United States. UnitedHealth Group has a market cap of $58.72 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 11.5, equal to the average health services industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 12.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 15 analysts that rate UnitedHealth Group a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and four rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates UnitedHealth Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, revenue growth, attractive valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the health services industry could consider Health Care Select Sector SPDR ( XLV) while those bearish on the health services industry could consider ProShares Ultra Short Health Care ( RXD).

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