The

Dow Jones Industrial Average

(

^DJI

) is trading up 37 points (+0.3%) at 12,975 as of Thursday, Feb 23, 2012, 12:35 p.m. ET. During this time, 332.6 million shares of the 30 Dow components have changed hands vs. an average daily trading volume of 818.6 million. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 2,072 issues advancing vs. 839 declining with 118 unchanged.

The Dow component leading the way higher looks to be

Wal-Mart Stores

(NYSE:

WMT

), which is sporting a 15-cent gain (+0.3%) bringing the stock to $58.75. This single gain is lifting the Dow Jones Industrial Average by 1.14 points or roughly accounting for 3.1% of the Dow's overall gain. Volume for Wal-Mart Stores currently sits at 7.9 million shares traded vs. an average daily trading volume of 9.5 million shares.

Wal-Mart Stores has a market cap of $210.24 billion and is part of the

services

sector and

retail

industry. Shares are down 1.9% year to date as of Wednesday's close. The stock's dividend yield sits at 2.4%.

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. operates retail stores in various formats worldwide. The company's Walmart U.S. The company has a P/E ratio of 13.2, above the average retail industry P/E ratio of 13.1 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7.

TheStreet Ratings rates Wal-Mart Stores as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity, solid stock price performance, good cash flow from operations and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

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