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5 Stocks Pushing The Services Sector Lower

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model

One out of the three major indices are trading lower today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) trading down 9 points (-0.1%) at 12,786 as of Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012, 11:49 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,471 issues advancing vs. 1,424 declining with 128 unchanged.

The Services sector currently sits up 0.1% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.0%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Best Buy (BBY), down 11.7%, Patterson Companies (PDCO), down 7.5%, Signet Jewelers (SIG), down 2.8%, Dollar General Corporation (DG), down 1.5% and Yum Brands (YUM), down 1.2%. Top gainers within the sector include DSW (DSW), up 8.3%, Charter Communications (CHTR), up 3.6%, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), up 3.1%, Sears Holdings Corporation (SHLD), up 3.0% and Whirlpool Corporation (WHR), up 2.9%.

TheStreet Ratings group would like to highlight 5 stocks pushing the sector lower today:

5. Apollo Group (APOL) is one of the companies pushing the Services sector lower today. As of noon trading, Apollo Group is down $0.88 (-4.5%) to $18.74 on average volume Thus far, 1.0 million shares of Apollo Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.4 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $18.65-$19.60 after having opened the day at $19.60 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $19.62.

Apollo Group, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides online and on-campus educational programs and services at the undergraduate, master's, and doctoral levels. Apollo Group has a market cap of $2.2 billion and is part of the diversified services industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 6.1, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 63.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 6 analysts that rate Apollo Group a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Apollo Group as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its attractive valuation levels, expanding profit margins and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including feeble growth in the company's earnings per share, deteriorating net income and weak operating cash flow. Get the full Apollo Group Ratings Report now.

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