Chesapeake Energy Corp (CHK): Today's Featured Basic Materials Winner

Chesapeake Energy ( CHK) pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today making it today's featured basic materials winner. The sector as a whole closed the day down 0.5%. By the end of trading, Chesapeake Energy rose 29 cents (1.5%) to $19.65 on light volume. Throughout the day, 27.1 million shares of Chesapeake Energy exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 36.6 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $19.23-$20.14 after having opened the day at $19.41 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $19.36. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that increased today were: Geokinetics ( GOK), up 30.3%, Patriot Coal Corporation ( PCX), up 22.3%, James River Coal Company ( JRCC), up 15.6%, and Apco Oil and Gas International ( APAGF), up 14.9%.

Chesapeake Energy Corporation engages in the acquisition, exploration, development, and production of natural gas and oil properties in the United States. The company also offers marketing, midstream, drilling, and other oilfield services. Chesapeake Energy has a market cap of $12.82 billion and is part of the energy industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 7.7, below the average energy industry P/E ratio of eight and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 13.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 11 analysts that rate Chesapeake Energy a buy, one analyst rates it a sell, and 15 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Chesapeake Energy as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, compelling growth in net income and reasonable valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including weak operating cash flow, poor profit margins and generally poor debt management.

On the negative front, Houston American Energy Corporation ( HUSA), down 18.4%, Prospect Global Resources ( PGRX), down 12%, Solazyme ( SZYM), down 10.4%, and Cardero Resources Corporation ( CDY), down 10.1%, were all losers within the basic materials sector with ConocoPhillips ( COP) being today's basic materials sector loser.

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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