WellPoint Inc (WLP): Today's Featured Health Care 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.

WellPoint ( WLP) pushed the Health Care sector lower today making it today's featured Health Care laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.8%. By the end of trading, WellPoint fell $1.54 (-1.8%) to $85.90 on average volume. Throughout the day, 2,277,044 shares of WellPoint exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,914,800 shares. The stock ranged in price between $85.32-$86.88 after having opened the day at $86.33 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $87.44. Other companies within the Health Care sector that declined today were: Sequenom ( SQNM), down 29.6%, AEterna Zentaris ( AEZS), down 20.9%, OncoMed Pharmaceuticals ( OMED), down 14.2% and IntelliPharmaCeutics International ( IPCI), down 13.0%.

WellPoint, Inc., a health benefits company, through its subsidiaries, offers network-based managed care plans to large and small employer, individual, Medicaid, and senior markets in the United States. The company operates through three segments: Commercial, Consumer, and Other. WellPoint has a market cap of $26.3 billion and is part of the health services industry. Shares are up 43.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 7 analysts that rate WellPoint a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates WellPoint as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, attractive valuation levels and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, InterMune ( ITMN), up 15.2%, Boston Scientific ( BSX), up 12.7%, IsoRay ( ISR), up 12.6% and Sangamo BioSciences ( SGMO), up 11.6% , were all gainers within the health care sector with Actavis ( ACT) 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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