Trade-Ideas LLC identified Marathon Petroleum ( MPC) as an unusual social activity candidate. In addition to specific proprietary factors, Trade-Ideas identified Marathon Petroleum as such a stock due to the following factors:

  • MPC has more that 20x the normal benchmarked social activity for this time of the day compared to its average of 2.58 mentions/day.
  • MPC has an average dollar-volume (as measured by average daily share volume multiplied by share price) of $264.5 million.

Identifying stocks with 'Unusual Social Activity' tends to be a valuable process for traders looking to capitalize on the 'talk of the town' stocks that are basking in far more attention from the StockTwits financial community than normal. Good press? Bad press? It ultimately doesn't matter if it's good or bad if you know how to trade around the sentiment. Certain hedge funds use such data for their proprietary algorithms and it is not uncommon to see shared social sentiment play itself out in a stock's price trend.

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More details on MPC:

Marathon Petroleum Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, engages in refining, marketing, retailing, and transporting petroleum products primarily in the United States. It operates through three segments: Refining & Marketing, Speedway, and Pipeline Transportation. The stock currently has a dividend yield of 3.1%. MPC has a PE ratio of 7. Currently there are 8 analysts that rate Marathon Petroleum a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

The average volume for Marathon Petroleum has been 5.6 million shares per day over the past 30 days. Marathon has a market cap of $22.3 billion and is part of the basic materials sector and energy industry. The stock has a beta of 1.59 and a short float of 1.5% with 1.08 days to cover. Shares are down 22.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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TheStreetRatings.com Analysis:

TheStreet Quant Ratings rates Marathon Petroleum as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, notable return on equity and attractive valuation levels. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • MARATHON PETROLEUM CORP has improved earnings per share by 49.1% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past year. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, MARATHON PETROLEUM CORP increased its bottom line by earning $4.42 versus $3.31 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($5.72 versus $4.42).
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry. The net income increased by 41.1% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $672.00 million to $948.00 million.
  • Current return on equity exceeded its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a clear sign of strength within the company. Compared to other companies in the Oil, Gas & Consumable Fuels industry and the overall market, MARATHON PETROLEUM CORP's return on equity significantly exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • Regardless of the drop in revenue, the company managed to outperform against the industry average of 36.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues fell by 29.8%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.

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