Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras (PBR.A): Today's Featured Basic Materials Laggard

Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras ( PBR.A) pushed the Basic Materials sector lower today making it today's featured Basic Materials laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day down 0.5%. By the end of trading, Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras fell 22 cents (-1.1%) to $20.61 on average volume. Throughout the day, 8.3 million shares of Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 8.7 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $20.51-$20.98 after having opened the day at $20.97 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $20.83. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that declined today were: Lone Pine Resources ( LPR), down 37.1%, Gold Standard Ventures ( GSV), down 26.8%, Royale Energy ( ROYL), down 23.8%, and Dejour Energy ( DEJ), down 18%.

Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. primarily engages in oil and natural gas exploration and production, refining, trade, and transportation businesses. Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras has a market cap of $136.31 billion and is part of the energy industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 7.1, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 9.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Petroleo Brasileiro SA Petrobras as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, attractive valuation levels and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, ATP Oil & Gas ( ATPG), up 13.9%, Cobalt International Energy ( CIE), up 13.7%, BPZ Resources ( BPZ), up 11.2%, and Prospect Global Resources ( PGRX), up 11.1%, were all gainers within the basic materials sector with Encana ( ECA) 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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