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

Monster Beverage



) pushed the Food & Beverage industry lower today making it today's featured Food & Beverage laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.3%. By the end of trading, Monster Beverage fell $0.84 (-1.5%) to $55.91 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1,083,009 shares of Monster Beverage exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2,219,700 shares. The stock ranged in price between $55.51-$56.50 after having opened the day at $56.38 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $56.75. Other companies within the Food & Beverage industry that declined today were:

Central European Distribution



), down 18.2%,

Origin Agritech



), down 4.8%,

Tianli Agritech



), down 4.3% and

Farmer Bros



), down 4.2%.

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Monster Beverage Corporation, through its subsidiaries, develops, markets, sells, and distributes alternative beverage category beverages in the United States and internationally. Monster Beverage has a market cap of $9.4 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 31.3, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 7.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 4 analysts that rate Monster Beverage a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Monster Beverage as a


. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, notable return on equity, good cash flow from operations and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

On the positive front,

Dean Foods Company



), down 4.3%,

WhiteWave Foods



), down 4.1%,

Crumbs Bake Shop



), down 4.0% and

Constellation Brands



), down 3.0% , were all gainers within the food & beverage industry with

Constellation Brands



) being today's featured food & beverage industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the food & beverage industry could consider

PowerShares Dynamic Food & Beverage



) while those bearish on the food & beverage industry could consider

PowerShares DB Agriculture Sht ETN




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