Encana Corp (ECA): Today's Featured Basic Materials 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

Encana ( ECA) pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today making it today's featured basic materials winner. The sector as a whole closed the day down 0.4%. By the end of trading, Encana rose $0.31 (1.7%) to $18.66 on average volume. Throughout the day, 5,046,016 shares of Encana exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5,142,900 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $18.22-$18.84 after having opened the day at $18.31 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $18.35. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that increased today were: Ceres ( CERE), up 19.2%, Thompson Creek Metals Company ( TC), up 18.0%, Banro Corporation ( BAA), up 17.6% and Adams Resources & Energy ( AE), up 15.8%.
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Encana Corporation and its subsidiaries engage in the exploration for, development, production, and marketing of natural gas, oil, and natural gas liquids in Canada and the United States. Encana has a market cap of $13.4 billion and is part of the energy industry. Shares are down 7.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 3 analysts that rate Encana a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Encana as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity, poor profit margins and weak operating cash flow.

On the negative front, Willbros Group ( WG), down 20.6%, Golden Star Resources ( GSS), down 16.8%, Prospect Global Resources ( PGRX), down 12.2% and KiOR ( KIOR), down 10.3% , were all laggards within the basic materials sector with Hess ( HES) being today's basic materials sector laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the basic materials sector could consider Materials Select Sector SPDR ( XLB) while those bearish on the basic materials sector could consider ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd ( SBM).

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