CF Industries Holdings Inc (CF): Today's Featured Chemicals 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.

CF Industries Holdings ( CF) pushed the Chemicals industry lower today making it today's featured Chemicals laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.5%. By the end of trading, CF Industries Holdings fell $2.65 (-1.4%) to $188.49 on average volume. Throughout the day, 869,767 shares of CF Industries Holdings exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.1 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $188.05-$191.14 after having opened the day at $191.14 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $191.14. Other companies within the Chemicals industry that declined today were: Pure Bioscience ( PURE), down 4.5%, Hawkins ( HWKN), down 4.4%, BioFuel Energy Corporation ( BIOF), down 3.2%, and Pacific Ethanol ( PEIX), down 3.1%.
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CF Industries Holdings, Inc. manufactures and distributes nitrogen and phosphate fertilizer products worldwide. It operates in two segments, Nitrogen and Phosphate. CF Industries Holdings has a market cap of $11.58 billion and is part of the basic materials sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 6.7, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 5.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are seven analysts that rate CF Industries Holdings a buy, one analyst rates it a sell, and seven rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates CF Industries Holdings 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, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins and increase in net income. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook.

On the positive front, Amyris ( AMRS), up 5.9%, Ceres ( CERE), up 5.6%, Senomyx ( SNMX), up 5.4%, and NL Industries ( NL), up 4.9%, were all gainers within the chemicals industry with Monsanto Company ( MON) being today's featured chemicals industry leader.

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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