Eagle Materials Inc. (EXP): Today's Featured Materials & Construction 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.

Eagle Materials ( EXP) pushed the Materials & Construction industry lower today making it today's featured Materials & Construction laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, Eagle Materials fell $1.18 (-1.6%) to $70.39 on average volume. Throughout the day, 1.1 million shares of Eagle Materials exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 799,800 shares. The stock ranged in price between $69.61-$71.10 after having opened the day at $70.08 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $71.57. Other companies within the Materials & Construction industry that declined today were: Sterling Construction Company ( STRL), down 3.5%, Universal Forest Products ( UFPI), down 3.5%, Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Corporation ( GLDD), down 3.2%, and Matrix Service Company ( MTRX), down 3.1%.
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Eagle Materials Inc. manufactures and distributes building products used in residential, industrial, commercial, and infrastructure construction in the United States. The company operates in four segments: Cement, Gypsum Wallboard, Recycled Paperboard, and Concrete and Aggregates. Eagle Materials has a market cap of $3.46 billion and is part of the industrial goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 55.1, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 22.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there is one analyst that rates Eagle Materials a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and eight rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Eagle Materials as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

On the positive front, Goldfield ( GV), up 10.3%, Sharps Compliance Corporation ( SMED), up 8.3%, China Advanced Construction Materials Group ( CADC), up 7%, and Guanwei Recycling ( GPRC), up 6%, were all gainers within the materials & construction industry with Republic Services ( RSG) being today's featured materials & construction industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the materials & construction industry could consider SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF ( XHB) while those bearish on the materials & construction industry could consider ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd ( SBM).

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