Southwest Airlines Co (LUV): Today's Featured Transportation 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.

Southwest Airlines ( LUV) pushed the Transportation industry higher today making it today's featured transportation winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.5%. By the end of trading, Southwest Airlines rose 12 cents (1.4%) to $8.98 on average volume. Throughout the day, 8.6 million shares of Southwest Airlines exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 7.9 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $8.84-$8.98 after having opened the day at $8.86 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $8.86. Other companies within the Transportation industry that increased today were: DS Torm ( TRMD), up 42.6%, Ultrapetrol Bahamas ( ULTR), up 11.7%, Overseas Shipholding Group ( OSG), up 9.1%, and Excel Maritime Carriers ( EXM), up 8.9%.
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Southwest Airlines Co. engages in the operation of a passenger airline that provides scheduled air transportation in the United States. Southwest Airlines has a market cap of $6.52 billion and is part of the services sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 19.9, above the average transportation industry P/E ratio of 19.5 and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 2.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are seven analysts that rate Southwest Airlines a buy, one analyst rates it a sell, and five rate it a hold.

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

On the negative front, Gol Intelligent Airlines ( GOL), down 10.5%, Ship Finance International ( SFL), down 6.4%, Seanergy Maritime Holdings ( SHIP), down 4.7%, and Star Bulk Carriers ( SBLK), down 4.3%, were all laggards within the transportation industry with Expeditors International of Washington ( EXPD) being today's transportation industry laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the transportation industry could consider iShares Dow Jones Transportation ( IYT) while those bearish on the transportation industry could consider ProShares UltraShort Industrials ( SIJ).

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