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

.

Costco Wholesale Corporation

(

COST

) pushed the Retail industry higher today making it today's featured retail winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.5%. By the end of trading, Costco Wholesale Corporation rose $1.51 (1.6%) to $96.25 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1.2 million shares of Costco Wholesale Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.1 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $94.39-$96.41 after having opened the day at $94.68 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $94.74. Other companies within the Retail industry that increased today were:

SUPERVALU

(

SVU

), up 10.8%,

BioScrip

(

BIOS

), up 4.9%,

Bon-Ton Stores

(

BONT

), up 4.8%, and

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage

(

NGVC

), up 4.7%.

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Costco Wholesale Corporation operates membership warehouses that offer a selection of branded and private label products in a range of merchandise categories in no-frills, self-service warehouse facilities. Costco Wholesale Corporation has a market cap of $41.35 billion and is part of the

services

sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 26.7, equal to the average retail industry P/E ratio and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 14.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate Costco Wholesale Corporation a buy, three analysts rate it a sell, and seven 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 growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, revenue growth, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

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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