Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold (FCX): Today's Featured Metals & Mining 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.

Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold ( FCX) pushed the Metals & Mining industry lower today making it today's featured Metals & Mining laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.5%. By the end of trading, Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold fell $0.46 (-1.2%) to $36.20 on average volume. Throughout the day, 11,375,716 shares of Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 10,205,200 shares. The stock ranged in price between $36.13-$36.66 after having opened the day at $36.60 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $36.66. Other companies within the Metals & Mining industry that declined today were: North American Palladium ( PAL), down 16.3%, Universal Stainless & Alloy Products ( USAP), down 8.0%, Great Panther Silver ( GPL), down 7.9% and Uranium Resources ( URRE), down 6.8%.

Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. engages in the exploration of mineral resource properties. The company primarily explores for copper, gold, molybdenum, cobalt, silver, and other metals, such as rhenium and magnetite. Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold has a market cap of $38.4 billion and is part of the basic materials sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.5, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 2.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 13 analysts that rate Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins 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 positive front, Prospect Global Resources ( PGRX), up 28.6%, Golden Minerals ( AUMN), up 10.7%, Tonix Pharmaceuticals ( TNXP), up 9.2% and Denison Mines Corporation ( DNN), up 5.2% , were all gainers within the metals & mining industry with Alcoa ( AA) being today's featured metals & mining industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the metals & mining industry could consider SPDR S&P Metals & Mining ETF ( XME) while those bearish on the metals & mining industry could consider PowerShares DB Base Metals Sht ETN ( BOS).

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