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

.

HollyFrontier

(

HFC

) pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today making it today's featured basic materials winner. The sector as a whole closed the day down 1.3%. By the end of trading, HollyFrontier rose 51 cents (1.3%) to $40.38 on light volume. Throughout the day, two million shares of HollyFrontier exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.9 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $39.48-$40.60 after having opened the day at $39.50 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $39.87. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that increased today were:

BP Prudhoe Bay Royalty

(

BPT

), up 16.6%,

Gold Standard Ventures

(

GSV

), up 16.2%,

Lizhan Environmental

(

LZEN

), up 13.6%, and

American Pacific Corporation

(

APFC

), up 10.4%.

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HollyFrontier Corporation operates as an independent petroleum refiner and marketer in the United States. It produces light products, such as gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, specialty lubricant products, liquefied petroleum gas, fuel oil, and specialty and modified asphalt. HollyFrontier has a market cap of $8.22 billion and is part of the

energy

industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 5.5, below the average energy industry P/E ratio of 5.9 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 72.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are nine analysts that rate HollyFrontier a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and five rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates HollyFrontier as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, attractive valuation levels, increase in stock price during the past year and impressive record of earnings per share growth. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the negative front,

BPZ Resources

(

BPZ

), down 10.1%,

Molycorp

(

MCP

), down 9.4%,

North American Energy Partners Incorporate

(

NOA

), down 8.4%, and

Quest Rare Minerals

(

QRM

), down 7.5%, were all laggards within the basic materials sector with

EOG Resources

(

EOG

) being today's basic materials sector laggard.

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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