Chevron Corp (CVX): Today's Featured Basic Materials 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.

Chevron ( CVX) pushed the Basic Materials sector higher today making it today's featured basic materials winner. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, Chevron rose $2.86 (2.4%) to $121.60 on average volume. Throughout the day, 8,141,605 shares of Chevron exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5,963,700 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $119.21-$121.77 after having opened the day at $119.33 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $118.74. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that increased today were: Syntroleum Corporation ( SYNM), up 35.8%, Andatee China Marine Fuel Services Corporat ( AMCF), up 24.8%, North American Palladium ( PAL), up 11.9% and Ivanhoe Energy ( IVAN), up 11.0%.

Chevron Corporation, through its subsidiaries, engages in petroleum, chemicals, mining, power generation, and energy operations worldwide. The company operates in two segments, Upstream and Downstream. Chevron has a market cap of $231.2 billion and is part of the energy industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 9.8, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 9.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 10 analysts that rate Chevron a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Chevron as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat weak growth in earnings per share.

On the negative front, American Vanguard Corporation ( AVD), down 9.4%, Ikonics Corporation ( IKNX), down 7.9%, Exeter Resource Corporation ( XRA), down 7.3% and Albemarle ( ALB), down 7.2% , were all laggards within the basic materials sector with Ensco ( ESV) being today's basic materials sector laggard.

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

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