Halliburton Company (HAL): 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

Halliburton Company ( HAL) pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today making it today's featured basic materials winner. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, Halliburton Company rose $1.40 (3.2%) to $45.25 on average volume. Throughout the day, 13,283,092 shares of Halliburton Company exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 11,567,500 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $44.41-$45.25 after having opened the day at $44.63 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $43.85. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that increased today were: Houston American Energy Corporation ( HUSA), up 19.9%, Torch Energy Royalty ( TRU), up 13.2%, Zion Oil & Gas ( ZN), up 10.7% and James River Coal Company ( JRCC), up 9.9%.
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Halliburton Company provides a range of services and products for the exploration, development, and production of oil and natural gas. The company operates in two segments, Completion and Production, and Drilling and Evaluation. Halliburton Company has a market cap of $41.1 billion and is part of the energy industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 21.2, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 26.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 22 analysts that rate Halliburton Company a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Halliburton Company as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the negative front, China Shen Zhou Mining & Resources ( SHZ), down 17.2%, Andatee China Marine Fuel Services Corporat ( AMCF), down 10.3%, Timberline Resources Corporation ( TLR), down 9.6% and China Gengsheng Minerals ( CHGS), down 9.5% , were all laggards within the basic materials sector with Goldcorp ( GG) 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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