Staples Inc

(

SPLS

) pushed the Specialty Retail industry higher today making it today's featured specialty retail winner. The industry as a whole closed the day down 1.3%. By the end of trading, Staples Inc rose 12 cents (0.8%) to $14.96 on average volume. Throughout the day, 15.6 million shares of Staples Inc exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 12.4 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $14.59-$15.09 after having opened the day at $14.75 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $14.84. Other companies within the Specialty Retail industry that increased today were:

Charles & Colvard

(

CTHR

), up 9%,

Lentuo International Inc

(

LAS

), up 7.7%,

Birks & Mayors Inc

(

BMJ

), up 6%, and

Perfumania Holdings Inc

(

PERF

), up 5.4%.

Staples, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as an office products company. The company sells various office supplies and services, business machines and related products, computers and related products, and office furniture. Staples Inc has a market cap of $10.4 billion and is part of the

services

sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 11.3, equal to the average specialty retail industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 34.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Staples as a

hold

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth and increase in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including poor profit margins and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

On the negative front,

Big five Sporting Goods Corporation

(

BGFV

), down 6.6%,

Sothebys

(

BID

), down 6%,

iParty Corporation

(

IPT

), down 5.5%, and

OfficeMax Inc

(

OMX

), down 5.2%, were all losers within the specialty retail industry with

Office Depot Inc

(

ODP

) being today's specialty retail industry loser.

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

SPDR S&P Retail ETF

(

XRT

) while those bearish on the specialty retail industry could consider

ProShares Ultra Sht Consumer Goods

(

SZK

).

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