Casey's General Stores Inc. (CASY): Today's Featured Services Loser

Casey's General Stores ( CASY) pushed the Services sector lower today making it today's featured Services loser. The sector as a whole closed the day up 1.8%. By the end of trading, Casey's General Stores fell 55 cents (-1%) to $56.80 on average volume. Throughout the day, 302,916 shares of Casey's General Stores exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 221,200 shares. The stock ranged in price between $56.41-$57.68 after having opened the day at $57.30 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $57.35. Other company's within the Services sector that declined today were: China HGS Real Estate ( HGSH), down 16.4%, DS Torm ( TRMD), down 11.2%, SinoHub ( SIHI), down 10.9%, and Lowe's Companies ( LOW), down 10.1%.

Casey's General Stores, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates convenience stores under the Casey's General Store, HandiMart, and Just Diesel names in 11 Midwestern states, primarily Iowa, Missouri, and Illinois. Casey's General Stores has a market cap of $2.15 billion and is part of the retail industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.6, equal to the average retail industry P/E ratio and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 9.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are three analysts that rate Casey's General Stores a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and four rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Casey's General Stores as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance, compelling growth in net income, good cash flow from operations and impressive record of earnings per share growth. 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, Hastings Entertainment ( HAST), up 20.8%, Pacific Sunwear ( PSUN), up 15.5%, StarTek ( SRT), up 14.1%, and Frontline ( FRO), up 13.9%, were all gainers within the services sector with Home Depot ( HD) being today's featured services sector winner.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the services sector could consider iShares Dow Jones US Cons Services ( IYC) while those bearish on the services sector could consider ProShares Ultra Short Consumer Sers ( SCC).
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