Monsanto Company (MON): Today's Featured Basic Materials 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.

Monsanto Company ( MON) pushed the Basic Materials sector lower today making it today's featured Basic Materials laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.3%. By the end of trading, Monsanto Company fell $2.41 (-2.1%) to $113.27 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 5,379,218 shares of Monsanto Company exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2,408,100 shares. The stock ranged in price between $112.78-$115.05 after having opened the day at $114.66 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $115.68. Other companies within the Basic Materials sector that declined today were: Great Northern Iron Ore ( GNI), down 24.9%, USEC ( USU), down 9.6%, Entree Gold ( EGI), down 7.7% and Gulfport Energy Corporation ( GPOR), down 6.5%.

Monsanto Company, together with its subsidiaries, provides agricultural products for farmers worldwide. It operates in two segments, Seeds and Genomics, and Agricultural Productivity. Monsanto Company has a market cap of $61.1 billion and is part of the chemicals industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 25.4, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 0.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 11 analysts that rate Monsanto Company a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Monsanto Company 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, notable return on equity, increase in stock price during the past year and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the positive front, MagneGas Corporation ( MNGA), up 42.6%, BioFuel Energy Corporation ( BIOF), up 25.8%, Dejour Energy ( DEJ), up 21.6% and Uranium Resources ( URRE), up 10.7% , were all gainers within the basic materials sector with Occidental Petroleum Corporation ( OXY) being today's featured basic materials sector leader.

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).

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

If you liked this article you might like

Why Bayer's $66 Billion Takeover of Monsanto Probably Won't Happen Until 2018

Hurricane Maria Has Quickly Become Another Category 5 Storm

Democrats Target Megamergers in Populist Political Play

Bayer, Monsanto Merger Under Scrutiny by EU Commission

Monsanto's Confusing Weed Killer Instructions Drive Farmers to Court