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Home Depot ( HD) pushed the Retail industry lower today making it today's featured Retail laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 1.6%. By the end of trading, Home Depot fell $1.28 (-1.6%) to $78.99 on average volume. Throughout the day, 9,956,941 shares of Home Depot exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 7,271,100 shares. The stock ranged in price between $77.89-$80.10 after having opened the day at $80.09 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $80.27. Other companies within the Retail industry that declined today were: dELiA*s ( DLIA), down 8.3%, Fairway Group Holdings Corp Class A ( FWM), down 4.3%, Tilly's ( TLYS), down 3.6% and China Jo-Jo Drugstores ( CJJD), down 3.3%.

The Home Depot, Inc. operates as a home improvement retailer. Home Depot has a market cap of $117.1 billion and is part of the services sector. Shares are up 29.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 11 analysts that rate Home Depot a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 9 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Home Depot as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, revenue growth, notable return on equity, good cash flow from operations and compelling growth in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company is trading at a premium valuation based on our review of its current price compared to such things as earnings and book value.

On the positive front, ALCO Stores ( ALCS), up 61.0%, GNC Holdings ( GNC), up 10.9%, Coastal Contacts ( COA), up 9.3% and E-Commerce China Dangdang ( DANG), up 8.7% , were all gainers within the retail industry with Amazon.com ( AMZN) being today's featured retail industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the retail industry could consider SPDR S&P Retail ETF ( XRT) while those bearish on the retail industry could consider ProShares Ultra Sht Consumer Goods ( SZK).

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