Dow Chemical Co (DOW): 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.

Dow Chemical ( DOW) 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, Dow Chemical rose 42 cents (1.2%) to $34.28 on average volume. Throughout the day, 6.9 million shares of Dow Chemical exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of eight million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $33.68-$34.29 after having opened the day at $33.83 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $33.86. Other companies within the Chemicals industry that increased today were: Synthesis Energy Sys ( SYMX), up 9.4%, Pure Bioscience ( PURE), up 7.7%, Landec Corporation ( LNDC), up 6.6%, and American Pacific Corporation ( APFC), up 2.8%.
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The Dow Chemical Company manufactures and supplies chemical products used as raw materials in the manufacture of customer products and services worldwide. Dow Chemical has a market cap of $40.58 billion and is part of the basic materials sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 26.2, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 4.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are two analysts that rate Dow Chemical a buy, four analysts rate it a sell, and 12 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Dow Chemical as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the negative front, Lightbridge ( LTBR), down 5.6%, Gevo ( GEVO), down 5.4%, Methes Energies International ( MEIL), down 5.2%, and BioFuel Energy Corporation ( BIOF), down 3.9%, were all laggards within the chemicals industry with Huntsman Corporation ( HUN) 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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