CME Group Inc. (CME): Today's Featured Financial Services Winner

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.

CME Group ( CME) pushed the Financial Services industry higher today making it today's featured financial services winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.1%. By the end of trading, CME Group rose 63 cents (1.1%) to $55.27 on light volume. Throughout the day, one million shares of CME Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.9 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $54.53-$55.32 after having opened the day at $54.53 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $54.64. Other companies within the Financial Services industry that increased today were: Knight Capital Group ( KCG), up 13.3%, Artio Global Investors ( ART), up 8.9%, Security National Financial Corporation ( SNFCA), up 6.7%, and Ampal-American Israel Corporation ( AMPL), up 6.1%.
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CME Group Inc. operates the CME, CBOT, NYMEX and COMEX futures exchanges worldwide. The company provides a range of products across various asset classes, such as interest rates, equity indexes, foreign exchange, energy, agricultural commodities, metals, weather, and real estate. CME Group has a market cap of $18.15 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 12.3, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 12.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are eight analysts that rate CME Group a buy, two analysts rate it a sell, and five rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates CME Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, increase in stock price during the past year and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the negative front, China Ceramics ( CCCL), down 10.4%, SGOCO Group ( SGOC), down 9.3%, CIFC ( DFR), down 7%, and First Marblehead Corporation ( FMD), down 6.6%, were all laggards within the financial services industry with T. Rowe Price Group ( TROW) being today's financial services industry laggard.

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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