Skip to main content

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





) pushed the Basic Materials sector lower today making it today's featured Basic Materials laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day down 0.5%. By the end of trading, Gerdau fell 21 cents (-2.3%) to $9.12 on light volume. Throughout the day, 5.1 million shares of Gerdau exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 7.6 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $9.09-$9.24 after having opened the day at $9.21 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $9.33. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that declined today were:

Lizhan Environmental



), down 36%,

Gasco Energy



), down 15.3%,

China Gerui Advanced Materials Group



), down 10.9%, and

Timberline Resources Corporation



), down 10.5%.

  • ACTIVE STOCK TRADERS: Check out TheStreet's special offer for Real Money, headlined by Jim Cramer, now!

Gerdau S.A. engages in the production and sale of steel products in Brazil and internationally. Gerdau has a market cap of $16.34 billion and is part of the

metals & mining

industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 7.8, below the average metals & mining industry P/E ratio of 14.6 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 19.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there is one analyst that rates Gerdau a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and four rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Gerdau as a


. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and increase in stock price during the past year. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including disappointing return on equity, poor profit margins and feeble growth in the company's earnings per share.

On the positive front,

Altair Nanotechnologies



), up 14.1%,

Almaden Minerals



), up 11.8%,




), up 10.1%, and

Pacific Ethanol



), up 9.7%, were all gainers within the basic materials sector with

Valero Energy Corporation



) 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



) while those bearish on the basic materials sector could consider

ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd