Equity Residential (EQR): Today's Featured Real Estate Laggard

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

Equity Residential ( EQR) pushed the Real Estate industry lower today making it today's featured Real Estate laggard. The industry as a whole was unchanged today. By the end of trading, Equity Residential fell $0.71 (-1.3%) to $54.95 on average volume. Throughout the day, 1,971,554 shares of Equity Residential exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2,341,000 shares. The stock ranged in price between $54.88-$56.00 after having opened the day at $55.42 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $55.66. Other companies within the Real Estate industry that declined today were: Homex Development ( HXM), down 15.1%, J.W. Mays ( MAYS), down 6.2%, Vestin Realty Mortgage II ( VRTB), down 4.7% and Intergroup Corporation ( INTG), down 3.9%.

Equity Residential, a real estate investment trust (REIT), engages in the acquisition, development, and management of multifamily properties in the United States. Equity Residential has a market cap of $20.2 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are down 1.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 5 analysts that rate Equity Residential a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 12 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Equity Residential as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, compelling growth in net income and notable return on equity. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, poor profit margins and weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, IFM Investments ( CTC), up 12.6%, Owens Realty Mortgage ( ORM), up 6.7%, Amrep Corporation ( AXR), up 5.3% and Income Opportunity Realty Investors ( IOT), up 4.8% , were all gainers within the real estate industry with National Retail Properties ( NNN) being today's featured real estate industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the real estate industry could consider iShares Dow Jones US Real Estate ( IYR) while those bearish on the real estate industry could consider ProShares Short Real Estate Fund ( REK).

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

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