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Costco Wholesale Corporation (COST): Today's Featured Retail 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.

Costco Wholesale Corporation ( COST) pushed the Retail industry lower today making it today's featured Retail laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.7%. By the end of trading, Costco Wholesale Corporation fell $1.81 (-1.6%) to $114.05 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 4,433,218 shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,795,200 shares. The stock ranged in price between $113.92-$116.04 after having opened the day at $116.04 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $115.86. Other companies within the Retail industry that declined today were: J.C. Penney ( JCP), down 10.0%, Pacific Sunwear ( PSUN), down 5.9%, Fairway Group Holdings Corp Class A ( FWM), down 5.1% and Acorn International ( ATV), down 5.0%.

Costco Wholesale Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates membership warehouses. The company offers branded and private-label products in a range of merchandise categories. Costco Wholesale Corporation has a market cap of $51.2 billion and is part of the services sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 25.1, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 2.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate Costco Wholesale Corporation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 9 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Costco Wholesale Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, Rite Aid Corporation ( RAD), up 6.4%, Overstock.com ( OSTK), up 4.8%, China Jo-Jo Drugstores ( CJJD), up 3.9% and BioScrip ( BIOS), up 3.5% , were all gainers within the retail industry with Walgreen Company ( WAG) being today's featured retail industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the retail industry could consider SPDR S&P Retail ETF ( XRT) while those bearish on the retail industry could consider ProShares Ultra Sht Consumer Goods ( SZK).

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