Varian Medical Systems Inc. (VAR): Today's Featured Health Care Laggard

Varian Medical Systems ( VAR) pushed the Health Care sector lower today making it today's featured Health Care laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, Varian Medical Systems fell $0.74 (-1.1%) to $65.86 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 1,223,814 shares of Varian Medical Systems exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 799,200 shares. The stock ranged in price between $65.74-$67.61 after having opened the day at $67.18 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $66.60. Other companies within the Health Care sector that declined today were: Pingtan Marine Enterprise ( PME), down 65.0%, CombiMatrix Corporation ( CBMX), down 14.8%, Stereotaxis ( STXS), down 12.3% and NewLink Genetics ( NLNK), down 11.6%.

Varian Medical Systems, Inc. designs, manufactures, sells, and services medical devices and software for treating cancer with radiotherapy, radiosurgery, proton therapy, and brachytherapy worldwide. Varian Medical Systems has a market cap of $7.2 billion and is part of the health services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 16.9, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 5.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 8 analysts that rate Varian Medical Systems a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Varian Medical Systems 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, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, Raptor Pharmaceutical ( RPTP), up 26.6%, Vision-Sciences Inc (DE ( VSCI), up 9.6%, Oramed Pharmaceuticals ( ORMP), up 9.3% and Cardica ( CRDC), up 8.7% , were all gainers within the health care sector with Bristol-Myers Squibb Company ( BMY) being today's featured health care sector leader.

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

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

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