BlackRock Inc (BLK): Today's Featured Financial Services Laggard

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

BlackRock ( BLK) pushed the Financial Services industry lower today making it today's featured Financial Services laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.2%. By the end of trading, BlackRock fell $1.96 (-1.1%) to $181.04 on average volume. Throughout the day, 588,721 shares of BlackRock exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 639,300 shares. The stock ranged in price between $180.56-$182.25 after having opened the day at $181.44 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $183. Other companies within the Financial Services industry that declined today were: Ampal-American Israel Corporation ( AMPL), down 9.6%, FirstCity Financial Corporation ( FCFC), down 6.9%, Dominion Resources Black Warrior ( DOM), down 6%, and KBW ( KBW), down 4%.
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BlackRock, Inc. is a publicly owned investment manager. The firm primarily provides its services to institutional, intermediary, and individual investors. BlackRock has a market cap of $31.6 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 14.7, 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 2.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are nine analysts that rate BlackRock a buy, one analyst rates it a sell, and six rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates BlackRock as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.

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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