Pioneer Natural Resources Company (PXD): Today's Featured Basic Materials Laggard

Pioneer Natural Resources Company ( PXD) pushed the Basic Materials sector lower today making it today's featured Basic Materials laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day up 1.2%. By the end of trading, Pioneer Natural Resources Company fell 56 cents (-0.6%) to $96.87 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1.2 million shares of Pioneer Natural Resources Company exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.3 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $96.53-$97.86 after having opened the day at $97.48 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $97.43. Other company's within the Basic Materials sector that declined today were: GeoMet ( GMET), down 16%, Tesco Corporation ( TESO), down 15.2%, Oxford Resource Partners ( OXF), down 12.7%, and Cubic Energy ( QBC), down 10.7%.

Pioneer Natural Resources Company engages in the exploration and production of oil and gas in the United States and South Africa. The company produces and sells oil, natural gas liquids (NGL), and gas. Pioneer Natural Resources Company has a market cap of $11.32 billion and is part of the energy industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 31.3, above the average energy industry P/E ratio of 16.2 and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 8.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 19 analysts that rate Pioneer Natural Resources Company a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and five rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Pioneer Natural Resources Company as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the positive front, Recon Technology ( RCON), up 20.7%, GeoPetro Resources Company ( GPR), up 18.8%, Minco Gold Corporation ( MGH), up 13.5%, and China Natural Resources ( CHNR), up 11.5%, were all gainers within the basic materials sector with Newmont Mining Corporation ( NEM) being today's featured basic materials sector leader.

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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