Peabody Energy Corporation (BTU): Today's Featured Basic Materials 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

Peabody Energy Corporation ( BTU) pushed the Basic Materials sector lower today making it today's featured Basic Materials laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.3%. By the end of trading, Peabody Energy Corporation fell $0.37 (-1.8%) to $19.77 on average volume. Throughout the day, 7,207,312 shares of Peabody Energy Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 7,660,200 shares. The stock ranged in price between $19.61-$20.25 after having opened the day at $20.06 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $20.14. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that declined today were: BMB Munai ( BMBM), down 16.7%, Torch Energy Royalty ( TRU), down 14.2%, Prospect Global Resources ( PGRX), down 13.3% and Houston American Energy Corporation ( HUSA), down 8.3%.
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Peabody Energy Corporation engages in the mining of coal. The company operates through Western U.S. Mining, Midwestern U.S. Mining, Australian Mining, Trading and Brokerage, and Corporate and Other segments. Peabody Energy Corporation has a market cap of $5.7 billion and is part of the metals & mining industry. Shares are down 21.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate Peabody Energy Corporation a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Peabody Energy Corporation as a hold. The company's strongest point has been its a solid financial position based on a variety of debt and liquidity measures that we have looked at. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins.

On the positive front, Crosshair Energy ( CXZ), down 17.6%, China Gerui Advanced Materials Group ( CHOP), down 12.6%, InterOil Corporation ( IOC), down 9.6% and Warren Resources ( WRES), down 9.1% , were all gainers within the basic materials sector with Anadarko Petroleum ( APC) being today's featured basic materials sector leader.

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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