Agilent Technologies Inc (A): Today's Featured Health Care Laggard

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Agilent Technologies ( A) pushed the Health Care sector lower today making it today's featured Health Care laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.6%. By the end of trading, Agilent Technologies fell $0.49 (-1.1%) to $44.85 on average volume. Throughout the day, 2,789,215 shares of Agilent Technologies exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3,382,300 shares. The stock ranged in price between $44.82-$45.60 after having opened the day at $45.55 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $45.34. Other companies within the Health Care sector that declined today were: Mast Therapeutics ( MSTX), down 37.8%, Orthofix International N.V ( OFIX), down 16.3%, Luminex Corporation ( LMNX), down 12.5% and Health Management Associates ( HMA), down 10.9%.

Agilent Technologies, Inc. provides bio-analytical and electronic measurement solutions and services to the life sciences, chemical analysis, diagnostics and genomics, communications, and electronics industries worldwide. Agilent Technologies has a market cap of $15.7 billion and is part of the health services industry. Shares are up 11.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 13 analysts that rate Agilent Technologies a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Agilent Technologies as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, reasonable valuation levels, expanding profit margins, solid stock price performance and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the positive front, Stereotaxis ( STXS), up 228.7%, Vanda Pharmaceuticals ( VNDA), up 44.2%, Reliv' International ( RELV), up 32.7% and Inovio Pharmaceuticals ( INO), up 29.0% , were all gainers within the health care sector with Regeneron Pharmaceuticals ( REGN) 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).

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