Harley-Davidson Inc (HOG): Today's Featured Automotive Laggard

Harley-Davidson ( HOG) pushed the Automotive industry lower today making it today's featured Automotive laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.2%. By the end of trading, Harley-Davidson fell $0.67 (-1.2%) to $54.87 on average volume. Throughout the day, 1,572,892 shares of Harley-Davidson exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,543,700 shares. The stock ranged in price between $54.68-$56.13 after having opened the day at $55.72 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $55.54. Other companies within the Automotive industry that declined today were: Westport Innovations ( WPRT), down 6.7%, Wabash National Corporation ( WNC), down 3.0%, Tata Motors ( TTM), down 2.7% and Navistar International ( NAV), down 2.3%.

Harley-Davidson, Inc. manufactures heavyweight cruiser and touring motorcycles. The company operates through two segments: the Motorcycles segment and the Financial Services segment. Harley-Davidson has a market cap of $12.3 billion and is part of the consumer goods sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.0, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 12.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate Harley-Davidson a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Harley-Davidson as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity, impressive record of earnings per share growth, increase in stock price during the past year and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, China Automotive Systems ( CAAS), up 5.5%, Shiloh Industries ( SHLO), up 3.9%, Winnebago Industries ( WGO), up 3.4% and Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide ( QTWW), up 3.4%.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the automotive industry could consider Consumer Discretionary Sel Sec SPDR ( XLY) while those bearish on the automotive industry could consider ProShares Ultra Sht Consumer Goods ( SZK).

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