Abbott Laboratories (ABT): Today's Featured Health Services 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

Abbott Laboratories ( ABT) pushed the Health Services industry higher today making it today's featured health services winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.7%. By the end of trading, Abbott Laboratories rose $0.70 (1.9%) to $37.05 on average volume. Throughout the day, 6,261,329 shares of Abbott Laboratories exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 7,439,200 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $36.22-$37.10 after having opened the day at $36.42 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $36.35. Other companies within the Health Services industry that increased today were: TearLab Corpoartion ( TEAR), up 17.3%, Escalon Medical Corporation ( ESMC), up 13.2%, Nanosphere ( NSPH), up 11.5% and Invacare Corporation ( IVC), up 8.9%.
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Abbott Laboratories engages in the discovery, development, manufacture, and sale of health care products worldwide. Abbott Laboratories has a market cap of $56.4 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 9.4, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 10.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 9 analysts that rate Abbott Laboratories a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Abbott Laboratories as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity and reasonable valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income, a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself and feeble growth in the company's earnings per share.

On the negative front, Unilife Corporation ( UNIS), down 11.4%, Hooper Holmes ( HH), down 11.3%, Stereotaxis ( STXS), down 10.8% and Arrhythmia Research Technology ( HRT), down 8.4% , were all laggards within the health services industry with UnitedHealth Group ( UNH) being today's health services industry laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the health services industry could consider Health Care Select Sector SPDR ( XLV) while those bearish on the health services industry could consider ProShares Ultra Short Health Care ( RXD).

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