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

Discover Financial Services ( DFS) pushed the Financial Services industry lower today making it today's featured Financial Services laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, Discover Financial Services fell $0.61 (-1.2%) to $50.28 on light volume. Throughout the day, 2,696,534 shares of Discover Financial Services exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4,044,200 shares. The stock ranged in price between $50.09-$51.25 after having opened the day at $51.25 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $50.89. Other companies within the Financial Services industry that declined today were: Siebert Financial Corporation ( SIEB), down 7.5%, Cash America International ( CSH), down 6.3%, Monroe Capital ( MRCC), down 5.7% and DFC Global ( DLLR), down 3.4%.

Discover Financial Services, a bank holding company, provides 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 $24.7 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are up 30.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 14 analysts that rate Discover Financial Services a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 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 revenue growth, solid stock price performance, growth in earnings per share, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook.

On the positive front, FBR ( FBRC), up 8.8%, Cash Store Financial Services ( CSFS), up 8.7%, Paulson Capital ( PLCC), up 5.8% and Evercore Partners ( EVR), up 4.8% , were all gainers within the financial services industry with Morgan Stanley ( MS) being today's featured financial services industry leader.

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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