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Intuitive Surgical Inc. (ISRG): 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.

Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) pushed the Health Services industry lower today making it today's featured Health Services laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.3%. By the end of trading, Intuitive Surgical fell $9.79 (-1.8%) to $535.84 on average volume. Throughout the day, 362,779 shares of Intuitive Surgical exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 343,300 shares. The stock ranged in price between $535-$544.79 after having opened the day at $538.70 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $545.63. Other companies within the Health Services industry that declined today were: IPC The Hospitalist Company (IPCM), down 16.9%, LifePoint Hospitals (LPNT), down 9.7%, Amedisys (AMED), down 6.3%, and Urologix (ULGX), down 4.2%.

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Intuitive Surgical, Inc. designs, manufactures, and markets da Vinci surgical systems for various surgical procedures, including urologic, gynecologic, cardiothoracic, general, and head and neck surgeries. Intuitive Surgical has a market cap of $21.59 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 35.1, equal to the average health services industry P/E ratio and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 17.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are six analysts that rate Intuitive Surgical a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and six rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Intuitive Surgical as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. We feel these 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.

On the positive front, Graymark Healthcare (GRMH), up 15.6%, Varian Medical Systems (VAR), up 15.2%, Thermogenesis Corporation (KOOL), up 12.5%, and PerkinElmer (PKI), up 9.8%, were all gainers within the health services industry with Waters Corporation (WAT) being today's featured health services industry leader.

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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