Continental Resources Inc (CLR): Today's Featured Basic Materials Winner

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

Continental Resources ( CLR) pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today making it today's featured basic materials winner. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, Continental Resources rose $1.42 (2%) to $73.46 on average volume. Throughout the day, 1.2 million shares of Continental Resources exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.6 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $71.50-$74.03 after having opened the day at $72.26 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $72.04. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that increased today were: Renewable Energy Group ( REGI), up 27.2%, China Shen Zhou Mining & Resources ( SHZ), up 12.2%, Prospect Global Resources ( PGRX), up 11.9%, and US Silica Holdings ( SLCA), up 11.8%.

Continental Resources, Inc. engages in the exploration, development, and production of crude oil and natural gas primarily in the north, south, and east regions of the United States. Continental Resources has a market cap of $12.59 billion and is part of the energy industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.9, below the average energy industry P/E ratio of 19.8 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 8% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are nine analysts that rate Continental Resources a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and eight rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Continental Resources as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, good cash flow from operations and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

On the negative front, Great Basin Gold ( GBG), down 45.5%, Forbes Energy Services ( FES), down 19.7%, ATP Oil & Gas ( ATPG), down 16.4%, and Royale Energy ( ROYL), down 9.8%, were all laggards within the basic materials sector with Weatherford International ( WFT) being today's basic materials sector laggard.

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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