Humana (HUM): Today's Featured Health Services Laggard

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.

Humana ( HUM) pushed the Health Services industry lower today making it today's featured Health Services laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.4%. By the end of trading, Humana fell 76 cents (-1.1%) to $66.11 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1.3 million shares of Humana exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.9 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $65.78-$66.79 after having opened the day at $65.85 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $66.87. Other companies within the Health Services industry that declined today were: Cardica ( CRDC), down 14.1%, Electromed ( ELMD), down 11.3%, Centene Corporation ( CNC), down 9.4%, and IsoRay ( ISR), down 8.3%.
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Humana Inc. operates as a health care company that offers a range of insurance products and health and wellness services that incorporate an integrated approach to lifelong well-being. Humana has a market cap of $10.7 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of nine, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 22.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 14 analysts that rate Humana a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and seven rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Humana as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and attractive valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, Stereotaxis ( STXS), up 20%, Dynatronics Corporation ( DYNT), up 7.9%, ERBA Diagnostics ( ERB), up 7%, and Urologix ( ULGX), up 6.7%, were all gainers within the health services industry with Express Scripts ( ESRX) being today's featured health services industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the health services industry could consider Health Care Select Sector SPDR ( XLV) while those bearish on the health services industry could consider ProShares Ultra Short Health Care ( RXD).

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