Aetna Inc (AET): Today's Featured Health Care Winner

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.

Aetna ( AET) pushed the Health Care sector higher today making it today's featured health care winner. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.9%. By the end of trading, Aetna rose $0.69 (1.1%) to $64.25 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1,417,656 shares of Aetna exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2,983,500 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $63.38-$64.50 after having opened the day at $63.55 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $63.56. Other companies within the Health Care sector that increased today were: Spherix ( SPEX), up 100.4%, Compugen ( CGEN), up 44.5%, Inovio Pharmaceuticals ( INO), up 44.2% and Aastrom Biosciences ( ASTM), up 31.1%.

Aetna Inc. operates as a diversified health care benefits company in the United States. The company operates in three segments: Health Care, Group Insurance, and Large Case Pensions. Aetna has a market cap of $23.7 billion and is part of the health services industry. Shares are up 37.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 11 analysts that rate Aetna a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 6 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Aetna as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance, increase in net income, attractive valuation levels and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.

On the negative front, Pingtan Marine Enterprise ( PME), down 82.5%, Mast Therapeutics ( MSTX), down 40.0%, Escalon Medical Corporation ( ESMC), down 10.1% and Prima Biomed ( PBMD), down 8.8% , were all laggards within the health care sector with Teva Pharmaceutical Industries ( TEVA) being today's health care sector laggard.

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).

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

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