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Steel Dynamics Inc (STLD): Today's Featured Basic Materials 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

Steel Dynamics (STLD) pushed the Basic Materials sector lower today making it today's featured Basic Materials laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.7%. By the end of trading, Steel Dynamics fell $0.18 (-1.2%) to $14.19 on average volume. Throughout the day, 2,743,204 shares of Steel Dynamics exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2,795,600 shares. The stock ranged in price between $13.90-$14.39 after having opened the day at $14.37 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $14.37. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that declined today were: GeoPetro Resources Company (GPR), down 14.3%, Harry Winston Diamond (HWD), down 11.0%, China Shen Zhou Mining & Resources (SHZ), down 10.0% and Timberline Resources Corporation (TLR), down 9.3%.

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Steel Dynamics, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, produces and sells steel products in the United States and internationally. The company operates in three segments: Steel Operations, Metals Recycling and Ferrous Resources Operations, and Steel Fabrication Operations. Steel Dynamics has a market cap of $3.2 billion and is part of the metals & mining industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 19.4, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 4.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Steel Dynamics as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, good cash flow from operations, growth in earnings per share and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

On the positive front, Crosshair Energy (CXZ), down 28.4%, Cardero Resources Corporation (CDY), down 21.1%, Kimber Resources (KBX), down 15.0% and China Gengsheng Minerals (CHGS), down 12.8% , were all gainers within the basic materials sector with Hess (HES) being today's featured basic materials sector leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the basic materials sector could consider Materials Select Sector SPDR (XLB) while those bearish on the basic materials sector could consider ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd (SBM).

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