Discover Financial Services (DFS): Today's Featured Financial Services Winner

Discover Financial Services ( DFS) pushed the Financial Services industry higher today making it today's featured financial services winner. The industry as a whole was unchanged today. By the end of trading, Discover Financial Services rose 57 cents (1.7%) to $34.14 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 8.3 million shares of Discover Financial Services exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4.9 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $33.31-$34.31 after having opened the day at $33.73 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $33.57. Other companies within the Financial Services industry that increased today were: Manhattan Bridge Capital ( LOAN), up 8.7%, Regional Management ( RM), up 7.1%, Federal Agricultural Mortgage ( AGM.A), up 5.1%, and Heckmann ( HEK), up 4.9%.

Discover Financial Services, a bank holding company, offers direct banking and payment services in the United States. It operates in two segments, Direct Banking and Payment Services. Discover Financial Services has a market cap of $17.41 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 7.5, equal to the average financial services industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 39.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 15 analysts that rate Discover Financial Services a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and three rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Discover Financial Services as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, revenue growth, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally poor debt management on most measures that we evaluated.

On the negative front, FXCM ( FXCM), down 6.3%, Ampal-American Israel Corporation ( AMPL), down 5.9%, FX Alliance ( FX), down 4.3%, and Gleacher ( GLCH), down 4.3%, were all losers within the financial services industry with CME Group ( CME) being today's financial services industry loser.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the financial services industry could consider Financial Select Sector SPDR ( XLF) while those bearish on the financial services industry could consider Proshares Short Financials ( SEF).
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