Safeway ( SWY) pushed the Retail industry lower today making it today's featured Retail loser. The industry as a whole closed the day up 1.4%. By the end of trading, Safeway fell 67 cents (-3.1%) to $20.93 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 15.9 million shares of Safeway exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 8.5 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $20.56-$21.40 after having opened the day at $20.93 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $21.60. Other company's within the Retail industry that declined today were: Whirlpool Corporation ( WHR), down 4.3%, Cache ( CACH), down 3.2%, Christopher & Banks Corporation ( CBK), down 2.5%, and Haverty Furniture Companies CL A ( HVT.A), down 1.6%.

Safeway Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as a food and drug retailer in North America. Safeway has a market cap of $5.57 billion and is part of the services sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 14.5, equal to the average retail industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 2.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are five analysts that rate Safeway a buy, four analysts rate it a sell, and eight rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Safeway as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations, growth in earnings per share and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally poor debt management on most measures that we evaluated.

On the positive front, Builders FirstSource ( BLDR), up 11.4%, Lumber Liquidators Holdings ( LL), up 9.8%, O'Reilly Automotive ( ORLY), up 6.2%, and RadioShack ( RSH), up 6%, were all gainers within the retail industry with eBay ( EBAY) being today's featured retail industry winner.

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).