Varian Medical Systems ( VAR) pushed the Health Care sector higher today making it today's featured health care winner. The sector as a whole was unchanged today. By the end of trading, Varian Medical Systems rose 90 cents (1.6%) to $57.75 on light volume. Throughout the day, 856,203 shares of Varian Medical Systems exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.2 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $56.22-$57.76 after having opened the day at $56.42 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $56.85. Other companies within the Health Care sector that increased today were: Alexza Pharmaceuticals ( ALXA), up 38.9%, Peregrine Pharmaceuticals ( PPHM), up 24.9%, Savient Pharmaceuticals ( SVNT), up 19.3%, and Tengion ( TNGN), up 14%.

Varian Medical Systems, Inc. designs, manufactures, sells, and services equipment and software products for treating cancer with radiotherapy, stereotactic radiotherapy, stereotactic body radiotherapy, stereotactic radiosurgery, and brachytherapy worldwide. Varian Medical Systems has a market cap of $6.27 billion and is part of the health services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.5, below the average health services industry P/E ratio of 15.9 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 15.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are seven analysts that rate Varian Medical Systems a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and three rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Varian Medical Systems as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, notable return on equity, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

On the negative front, SciClone Pharmaceuticals ( SCLN), down 16.3%, Arrowhead Research Corporation ( ARWR), down 14.2%, Bioline Rx Ltd. ADR ( BLRX), down 12.4%, and Senesco Technologies ( SNT), down 11.5%, were all laggards within the health care sector with Align Technology ( ALGN) being today's health care sector laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the health care sector could consider Health Care Select Sector SPDR ( XLV) while those bearish on the health care sector could consider ProShares Ultra Short Health Care ( RXD).

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