Valero Energy Corporation (VLO): Today's Featured Energy 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.

Valero Energy Corporation ( VLO) pushed the Energy industry lower today making it today's featured Energy laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 1.1%. By the end of trading, Valero Energy Corporation fell $1.01 (-2.2%) to $45.50 on average volume. Throughout the day, 11.3 million shares of Valero Energy Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 9.3 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $45.39-$47.09 after having opened the day at $46.87 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $46.51. Other companies within the Energy industry that declined today were: BMB Munai ( BMBM), down 12.1%, HyperDynamics Corporation ( HDY), down 11.9%, Callon Petroleum ( CPE), down 7.8%, and CKX Lands ( CKX), down 5.4%.
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Valero Energy Corporation operates as an independent petroleum refining and marketing company. The company operates through three segments: Refining, Ethanol, and Retail. Valero Energy Corporation has a market cap of $26.33 billion and is part of the basic materials sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 12.7, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 36.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 11 analysts that rate Valero Energy Corporation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and four rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Valero Energy Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, attractive valuation levels 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 positive front, Willbros Group ( WG), up 22.3%, Quicksilver Resources ( KWK), up 14.6%, Gasco Energy ( GSX), up 14.2%, and Cubic Energy ( QBC), up 12.5%, were all gainers within the energy industry with Halliburton Company ( HAL) being today's featured energy industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the energy industry could consider Energy Select Sector SPDR ( XLE) while those bearish on the energy industry could consider Proshares Short Oil & Gas ( DDG).

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