American Express Co (AXP): 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.

American Express ( AXP) pushed the Financial Services industry higher today making it today's featured financial services winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.3%. By the end of trading, American Express rose 80 cents (1.2%) to $65.50 on average volume. Throughout the day, 5.2 million shares of American Express exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.6 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $64.71-$65.62 after having opened the day at $64.73 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $64.70. Other companies within the Financial Services industry that increased today were: Security National Financial Corporation ( SNFCA), up 11.6%, China Ceramics ( CCCL), up 9%, Gleacher ( GLCH), up 8.1%, and Paulson Capital ( PLCC), up 8%.
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American Express Company provides charge and credit payment card products and travel-related services to customers worldwide. American Express has a market cap of $71.32 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 16.6, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 12.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are nine analysts that rate American Express a buy, two analysts rate it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates American Express as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

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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