Universal Corporation ( UVV) pushed the Consumer Goods sector higher today making it today's featured consumer goods winner. The sector as a whole closed the day down 1.6%. By the end of trading, Universal Corporation rose 49 cents (1.1%) to $45.93 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 362,800 shares of Universal Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 190,400 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $45.61-$46.76 after having opened the day at $45.61 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $45.44. Other companies within the Consumer Goods sector that increased today were: Mannatech ( MTEX), up 24.9%, Cybex International ( CYBI), up 9.8%, Tianli Agritech ( OINK), up 9.8%, and Industrie Natuzzi ( NTZ), up 9.3%. Universal Corporation, through its subsidiaries, operates as a leaf tobacco merchant and processor primarily in North America, South America, Africa, Europe, and Asia. Universal Corporation has a market cap of $1.04 billion and is part of the tobacco industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.8, equal to the average tobacco industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 3.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there is one analyst that rates Universal Corporation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold. TheStreet Ratings rates Universal Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, reasonable valuation levels and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.
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