MSC Industrial Direct Co. Inc. (MSM): Today's Featured Wholesale Loser

MSC Industrial Direct ( MSM) pushed the Wholesale industry lower today making it today's featured Wholesale loser. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.7%. By the end of trading, MSC Industrial Direct fell 78 cents (-1.2%) to $64.11 on average volume. Throughout the day, 469,097 shares of MSC Industrial Direct exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 472,100 shares. The stock ranged in price between $63.54-$65.62 after having opened the day at $65.04 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $64.89. Other company's within the Wholesale industry that declined today were: China Metro-Rural Holdings ( CNR), down 41.9%, China Auto Logistics ( CALI), down 13.1%, China Armco Metals ( CNAM), down 10.6%, and Hudson Technology ( HDSN), down 4.6%.

MSC Industrial Direct Co., Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as a direct marketer and distributor of metalworking and maintenance, repair, and operations (MRO) products to industrial customers in the United States. MSC Industrial Direct has a market cap of $3.13 billion and is part of the services sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 17.5, equal to the average wholesale industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 6.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are six analysts that rate MSC Industrial Direct a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and four rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates MSC Industrial Direct as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, MWI Veterinary Supply ( MWIV), up 4.5%, Edgen Group ( EDG), up 4.4%, InfoSonics Corporation ( IFON), up 3.9%, and Beacon Roofing Supply ( BECN), up 3.6%, were all gainers within the wholesale industry with Cardinal Health ( CAH) being today's featured wholesale industry winner.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the wholesale industry could consider iShares Dow Jones US Cons Goods ( IYK) while those bearish on the wholesale industry could consider ProShares Ultra Sht Consumer Goods ( SZK).