Praxair Inc. (PX): 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

Praxair ( PX) pushed the Chemicals industry higher today making it today's featured chemicals winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.9%. By the end of trading, Praxair rose $1.64 (1.4%) to $114.37 on light volume. Throughout the day, 758,796 shares of Praxair exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,227,900 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $112.56-$114.50 after having opened the day at $112.98 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $112.73. Other companies within the Chemicals industry that increased today were: Kronos Worldwide ( KRO), up 6.1%, Gevo ( GEVO), up 5.9%, Senomyx ( SNMX), up 5.7% and CVR Partners ( UAN), up 4.8%.
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Praxair, Inc. engages in the production, distribution, and sale of atmospheric and process gases, and surface coatings in North America, Europe, South America, and Asia. Praxair has a market cap of $33.4 billion and is part of the basic materials sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 20.4, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 3.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Praxair as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the negative front, Pure Bioscience ( PURE), down 5.7%, Flexible Solutions International ( FSI), down 3.8%, BioFuel Energy Corporation ( BIOF), down 2.6% and Cytec Industries ( CYT), down 1.7% , were all laggards within the chemicals industry with Eastman Chemical Company ( EMN) 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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