Charles Schwab

(

SCHW

) pushed the Financial Services industry higher today making it today's featured financial services winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.1%. By the end of trading, Charles Schwab rose 14 cents (1.1%) to $12.54 on light volume. Throughout the day, 7.8 million shares of Charles Schwab exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 12 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $12.25-$12.56 after having opened the day at $12.35 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $12.40. Other companies within the Financial Services industry that increased today were:

Ampal-American Israel Corporation

(

AMPL

), up 10.9%,

Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. Shs -A- Non-Voti

(

OPY

), up 7%,

Credit Suisse

(

DSLV

), up 5.9%, and

Penson Worldwide

(

PNSN

), up 5.6%.

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The Charles Schwab Corporation, through its subsidiaries, provides securities brokerage, banking, and related financial services to individuals and institutional clients. Charles Schwab has a market cap of $15.54 billion and is part of the

financial

sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.8, above the average financial services industry P/E ratio of 18.5 and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 8.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are four analysts that rate Charles Schwab a buy, one analyst rates it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Charles Schwab as a

hold

. Among the primary strengths of the company is its solid financial position based on a variety of debt and liquidity measures that we have evaluated. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow.

On the negative front,

Rodman & Renshaw Capital Group

(

RODM

), down 7.9%,

Direct Markets Holdings

(

MKTS

), down 7.9%,

Teucrium Agricultural Fund

(

TAGS

), down 5.9%, and

First Marblehead Corporation

(

FMD

), down 4.2%, were all losers within the financial services industry with

Discover Financial Services

(

DFS

) being today's financial services industry loser.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the financial services industry could consider

Financial Select Sector SPDR

(

XLF

) while those bearish on the financial services industry could consider

Proshares Short Financials

(

SEF

).

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