Eagle Materials Inc. (EXP): Today's Featured Materials & Construction 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.

Eagle Materials ( EXP) pushed the Materials & Construction industry higher today making it today's featured materials & construction winner. The industry as a whole was unchanged today. By the end of trading, Eagle Materials rose $1.91 (2.3%) to $85.24 on average volume. Throughout the day, 757,679 shares of Eagle Materials exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 660,500 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $82.96-$85.32 after having opened the day at $83.23 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $83.33. Other companies within the Materials & Construction industry that increased today were: Perma-Fix Environmental Services ( PESI), up 20.8%, Nuverra Environmental Solutions ( NES), up 7.6%, Gafisa ( GFA), up 7.2% and Louisiana-Pacific ( LPX), up 3.3%.

Eagle Materials Inc. manufactures and distributes building products used in residential, industrial, commercial, and infrastructure construction in the United States. The company operates in four segments: Cement, Gypsum Wallboard, Recycled Paperboard, and Concrete and Aggregates. Eagle Materials has a market cap of $4.3 billion and is part of the industrial goods sector. Shares are up 7.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 4 analysts that rate Eagle Materials a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Eagle Materials as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth and compelling growth in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

On the negative front, China Ceramics ( CCCL), down 6.2%, Ecology and Environment ( EEI), down 4.6%, Sharps Compliance Corporation ( SMED), down 4.2% and Desarrolladora Homex SAB de CV ADR ( HXM), down 4.0% , were all laggards within the materials & construction industry with Armstrong World Industries ( AWI) being today's materials & construction industry laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the materials & construction industry could consider SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF ( XHB) while those bearish on the materials & construction industry could consider ProShares Short Basic Materials Fd ( SBM).

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