W. R. Grace & Co. (GRA): Today's Featured Chemicals 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.

W. R. Grace ( GRA) pushed the Chemicals industry higher today making it today's featured chemicals winner. The industry as a whole was unchanged today. By the end of trading, W. R. Grace rose $2.66 (4.4%) to $62.86 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 1.2 million shares of W. R. Grace exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 625,300 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $60.69-$63.07 after having opened the day at $61.22 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $60.20. Other companies within the Chemicals industry that increased today were: Gevo ( GEVO), up 5.6%, A Schulman ( SHLM), up 4.4%, Renewable Energy Group ( REGI), up 3.9%, and Rentech Nitrogen Partners ( RNF), up 3.5%.
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W.R. Grace & Co. engages in the production and sale of specialty chemicals and materials worldwide. W. R. Grace has a market cap of $4.47 billion and is part of the basic materials sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 16.8, equal to the average chemicals industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 30% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are four analysts that rate W. R. Grace a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates W. R. Grace as a sell. Among the areas we feel are negative, one of the most important has been unimpressive growth in net income over time.

On the negative front, Cereplast ( CERP), down 10%, Pure Bioscience ( PURE), down 5.2%, Senomyx ( SNMX), down 4.8%, and Verenium Corporation ( VRNM), down 4.7%, were all laggards within the chemicals industry with Eastman Chemical Company ( EMN) being today's chemicals industry laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the chemicals industry could consider Materials Select Sector SPDR ( XLB) while those bearish on the chemicals industry could consider ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd ( SBM).

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