Senior Housing Properties Trust (SNH): Today's Featured Real Estate 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.

Senior Housing Properties ( SNH) pushed the Real Estate industry higher today making it today's featured real estate winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, Senior Housing Properties rose 22 cents (1%) to $22.27 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1.2 million shares of Senior Housing Properties exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.7 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $22.01-$22.29 after having opened the day at $22.08 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $22.05. Other companies within the Real Estate industry that increased today were: Optibase ( OBAS), up 10.9%, Amrep Corporation ( AXR), up 9.7%, Vestin Realty Mortgage I ( VRTA), up 9.2%, and Vestin Realty Mortgage II ( VRTB), up 6.6%.

Senior Housing Properties Trust, a real estate investment trust (REIT), primarily invests in senior housing properties in the United States. The trust invests in hospitals, nursing homes, senior apartments, independent living properties, and assisted living properties. Senior Housing Properties has a market cap of $3.88 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 26.5, above the average real estate industry P/E ratio of 26.2 and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 1.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are four analysts that rate Senior Housing Properties a buy, one analyst rates it a sell, and five rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Senior Housing Properties as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, reasonable valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the real estate industry could consider iShares Dow Jones US Real Estate ( IYR) while those bearish on the real estate industry could consider ProShares Short Real Estate Fund ( REK).
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