Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS): Today's Featured Financial Services Laggard

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Goldman Sachs Group ( GS) pushed the Financial Services industry lower today making it today's featured Financial Services laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.5%. By the end of trading, Goldman Sachs Group fell $3.54 (-2.1%) to $164.78 on average volume. Throughout the day, 3,560,790 shares of Goldman Sachs Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3,557,400 shares. The stock ranged in price between $164.47-$168.28 after having opened the day at $168.07 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $168.32. Other companies within the Financial Services industry that declined today were: 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%.

The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. provides investment banking, securities, and investment management services, as well as financial services to corporations, financial institutions, governments, and high-net-worth individuals worldwide. Goldman Sachs Group has a market cap of $76.9 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are up 32.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 4 analysts that rate Goldman Sachs Group a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 15 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Goldman Sachs Group as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and attractive valuation levels. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results.

On the positive front, 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% , were all gainers within the financial services industry with Blackstone Group ( BX) 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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