Westlake Chemical Corporation (WLK): Today's Featured Chemicals Laggard

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

Westlake Chemical Corporation ( WLK) pushed the Chemicals industry lower today making it today's featured Chemicals laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.2%. By the end of trading, Westlake Chemical Corporation fell $1.60 (-1.6%) to $99.02 on average volume. Throughout the day, 438,943 shares of Westlake Chemical Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 531,300 shares. The stock ranged in price between $98.70-$100.80 after having opened the day at $100.60 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $100.62. Other companies within the Chemicals industry that declined today were: Methes Energies International ( MEIL), down 13.5%, Sherwin-Williams Company ( SHW), down 8.3%, Ikonics Corporation ( IKNX), down 5.9% and Lightbridge ( LTBR), down 4.4%.

Westlake Chemical Corporation manufactures and markets basic chemicals, vinyls, polymers, and fabricated building products. It operates in two segments, Olefins and Vinyls. Westlake Chemical Corporation has a market cap of $6.7 billion and is part of the basic materials sector. Shares are up 26.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate Westlake Chemical Corporation a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Westlake Chemical Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, attractive valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

On the positive front, American Pacific Corporation ( APFC), up 4.5%, TOR Minerals International ( TORM), up 3.9%, REX American Resources ( REX), up 3.6% and Metabolix ( MBLX), up 3.2% , were all gainers within the chemicals industry with FMC Corporation ( FMC) being today's featured chemicals industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the chemicals industry could consider Materials Select Sector SPDR ( XLB) while those bearish on the chemicals industry could consider ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd ( SBM).

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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