Blackstone Group LP (BX): Today's Featured Financial Services Winner

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.

Blackstone Group ( BX) pushed the Financial Services industry higher today making it today's featured financial services winner. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.5%. By the end of trading, Blackstone Group rose $0.30 (1.3%) to $23.16 on average volume. Throughout the day, 6,204,114 shares of Blackstone Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5,117,400 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $22.70-$23.37 after having opened the day at $22.89 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $22.86. Other companies within the Financial Services industry that increased today were: First Marblehead Corporation ( FMD), up 5.8%, Investors Capital Holdings ( ICH), up 5.5%, PHH Corporation ( PHH), up 4.2% and Diamond Hill Investment Group ( DHIL), up 3.0%.

The Blackstone Group L.P., together with its subsidiaries, provides alternative asset management and financial advisory services worldwide. It operates in five segments: Private Equity, Real Estate, Hedge Fund Solutions, Credit Businesses, and Financial Advisory. Blackstone Group has a market cap of $12.8 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are up 46.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 8 analysts that rate Blackstone Group a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Blackstone Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. 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 negative front, Paulson Capital ( PLCC), down 9.3%, Global X Silver Miners ETF ( SIL), down 7.0%, SWS Group ( SWS), down 4.3% and Xoom ( XOOM), down 3.8% , were all laggards within the financial services industry with Goldman Sachs Group ( GS) 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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