Novartis AG (NVS): 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.

Novartis ( NVS) pushed the Health Care sector higher today making it today's featured health care winner. The sector as a whole closed the day down 0.6%. By the end of trading, Novartis rose $0.80 (1.1%) to $73.28 on average volume. Throughout the day, 1,320,976 shares of Novartis exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,490,300 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $73.24-$74.09 after having opened the day at $74.01 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $72.48. Other companies within the Health Care sector that increased today were: Dynatronics Corporation ( DYNT), up 92.1%, Senesco Technologies ( SNTI), up 59.3%, Actavis ( ACT), up 58.2% and Verenium Corporation ( VRNM), up 37.1%.

Novartis AG engages in the research, development, manufacture, and marketing of a range of healthcare products worldwide. Novartis has a market cap of $178.0 billion and is part of the drugs industry. Shares are up 14.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 6 analysts that rate Novartis a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

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

On the negative front, Pingtan Marine Enterprise ( PME), down 85.2%, Mast Therapeutics ( MSTX), down 40.0%, Skilled Healthcare Group ( SKH), down 25.5% and Inovio Pharmaceuticals ( INO), down 13.3% , were all laggards within the health care sector with Eli Lilly and Company ( LLY) 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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