Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. (CLF): Today's Featured Metals & Mining 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

Cliffs Natural Resources ( CLF) pushed the Metals & Mining industry higher today making it today's featured metals & mining winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.1%. By the end of trading, Cliffs Natural Resources rose $0.90 (5.1%) to $18.59 on average volume. Throughout the day, 12,929,590 shares of Cliffs Natural Resources exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 13,023,300 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $17.53-$18.74 after having opened the day at $17.67 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $17.69. Other companies within the Metals & Mining industry that increased today were: Prospect Global Resources ( PGRX), up 59.9%, China Gengsheng Minerals ( CHGS), up 26.7%, Cardero Resources Corporation ( CDY), up 16.8% and Walter Energy ( WLT), up 16.5%.
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Cliffs Natural Resources Inc., a mining and natural resources company, engages in the production of iron ore pellets, fines and lump ore, and metallurgical coal. Cliffs Natural Resources has a market cap of $2.7 billion and is part of the basic materials sector. Shares are down 54.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate Cliffs Natural Resources a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Cliffs Natural Resources as a hold. Among the primary strengths of the company is its generally strong cash flow from operations. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including disappointing return on equity, poor profit margins and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

On the negative front, Crosshair Energy ( CXZ), down 18.4%, Banro Corporation ( BAA), down 9.9%, China Gerui Advanced Materials Group ( CHOP), down 7.8% and Kimber Resources ( KBX), down 7.8% , were all laggards within the metals & mining industry with Barrick Gold Corporation ( ABX) being today's metals & mining industry laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the metals & mining industry could consider SPDR S&P Metals & Mining ETF ( XME) while those bearish on the metals & mining industry could consider PowerShares DB Base Metals Sht ETN ( BOS).

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