The basic materials sector closed the day up 1.7%. Gold Reserve Inc ( GRZ), Torch Energy Royalty ( TRU), Oilsands Quest Inc ( BQI), and Nanophase Technologies Corporation ( NANX) were all decliners today within the basic materials sector with Key Energy Services Inc ( KEG) being today's featured basic materials loser. Key Energy Services Inc fell 18 cents (-1.6%) to $11.39 on light volume. Throughout the day, 616,910 shares of Key Energy Services Inc exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.4 million shares.

Key Energy Services, Inc. operates as an onshore rig-based well servicing contractor in the United States and internationally. Key Energy Services Inc has a market cap of $1.6 billion and is part of the energy industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 282, above the average energy industry P/E ratio of 14.8 and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 13.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Key Energy Services as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth and compelling growth in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company's profit margins have been poor overall.

On the positive front, Cytec Industries ( CYT), LyondellBasell Industries ( LYB), Triangle Petroleum ( TPLM), and Metals USA Holdings ( MUSA) were all gainers within the basic materials sector with Chevron ( CVX) being today's featured basic materials sector winner.

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).