Sothebys (BID): Today's Featured Specialty Retail Loser

Sothebys ( BID) pushed the Specialty Retail industry lower today making it today's featured Specialty Retail loser. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.8%. By the end of trading, Sothebys fell $1.04 (-3.1%) to $32.81 on light volume. Throughout the day, 772,204 shares of Sothebys exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.2 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $32.18-$33.93 after having opened the day at $33.73 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $33.85. Other company's within the Specialty Retail industry that declined today were: Bluefly ( BFLY), down 11.3%, iParty Corporation ( IPT), down 9.1%, Sport Chalet ( SPCHA), down 6.9%, and Big five Sporting Goods Corporation ( BGFV), down 5.1%.

Sotheby's, together with its subsidiaries, operates as an auctioneer of authenticated fine and decorative art, jewelry, and collectibles in the United States, the United Kingdom, China, France, and internationally. The company operates in three segments: Auction, Finance, and Dealer. Sothebys has a market cap of $2.36 billion and is part of the services sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.3, below the average specialty retail industry P/E ratio of 15.5 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 18.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are four analysts that rate Sothebys a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and one rates it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Sothebys as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and expanding profit margins. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, deteriorating net income and weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, Birks & Mayors ( BMJ), up 14%, Hollywood Media Corporation ( HOLL), up 6.1%, Hibbett Sports ( HIBB), up 3.1%, and United Online ( UNTD), up 2.4%, were all gainers within the specialty retail industry with Netflix ( NFLX) being today's featured specialty retail industry winner.

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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