HollyFrontier Corp (HFC): Today's Featured Basic Materials Loser

HollyFrontier ( HFC) pushed the Basic Materials sector lower today making it today's featured Basic Materials loser. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, HollyFrontier fell 24 cents (-0.8%) to $30.58 on light volume. Throughout the day, 2.5 million shares of HollyFrontier exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.8 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $30.52-$31.43 after having opened the day at $30.93 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $30.82. Other company's within the Basic Materials sector that declined today were: GeoMet ( GMET), down 12.8%, Forest Oil ( FST), down 10.8%, Metabolix ( MBLX), down 9.2%, and Flexible Solutions International ( FSI), down 8.7%.

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 $6.61 billion and is part of the energy industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 4.9, equal to the average energy industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 31.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are seven analysts that rate HollyFrontier a buy, one analyst rates it a sell, and four 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, good cash flow from operations and compelling growth in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

On the positive front, Anooraq Resources Corporation ( ANO), up 15.6%, Advantage Oil & Gas ( AAV), up 10.5%, Huntsman Corporation ( HUN), up 9%, and Polymet Mining ( PLM), up 8.9%, 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).