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Gannett Co Inc (GCI): Today's Featured Services Laggard

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.

Gannett (GCI) pushed the Services sector lower today making it today's featured Services laggard. The sector as a whole was unchanged today. By the end of trading, Gannett fell 27 cents (-1.5%) to $17.90 on light volume. Throughout the day, 2.4 million shares of Gannett exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of four million shares. The stock ranged in price between $17.82-$18.23 after having opened the day at $18.22 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $18.17. Other companies within the Services sector that declined today were: LodgeNet Interactive Corporation (LNET), down 25%, Pacific Sunwear (PSUN), down 19.6%, Bluefly (BFLY), down 19.6%, and Point.360 (PTSX), down 17.1%.

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Gannett Co., Inc. operates as a media and marketing solutions company in the United States and internationally. Its Publishing segment publishes 82 U.S. Gannett has a market cap of $4.09 billion and is part of the media industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 9.7, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 33.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are four analysts that rate Gannett a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and four rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Gannett as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, revenue growth, attractive valuation levels, expanding profit margins and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, Mastech Holdings (MHH), up 27.3%, Christopher & Banks Corporation (CBK), up 24.5%, Five Below (FIVE), up 18.4%, and Grupo Casa Saba S.A.B. de C.V (SAB), up 15.5%, were all gainers within the services sector with O'Reilly Automotive (ORLY) being today's featured services sector leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the services sector could consider iShares Dow Jones US Cons Services (IYC) while those bearish on the services sector could consider ProShares Ultra Short Consumer Sers (SCC).

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