Airgas Inc (ARG): Today's Featured Wholesale 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.

Airgas ( ARG) pushed the Wholesale industry higher today making it today's featured wholesale winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 1.2%. By the end of trading, Airgas rose $1.39 (1.4%) to $102.46 on light volume. Throughout the day, 261,992 shares of Airgas exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 435,800 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $100.72-$102.70 after having opened the day at $101.25 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $101.07. Other companies within the Wholesale industry that increased today were: China Metro-Rural Holdings ( CNR), up 14.3%, Navarre Corporation ( NAVR), up 11.5%, Coast Distribution System ( CRV), up 10.5% and Hudson Technology ( HDSN), up 4.0%.

Airgas, Inc., through its subsidiaries, engages in the distribution of industrial, medical, and specialty gases in the United States. Airgas has a market cap of $7.5 billion and is part of the basic materials sector. Shares are up 10.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 6 analysts that rate Airgas a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Airgas as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins, notable return on equity and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the negative front, Aegean Marine Petroleum Network ( ANW), down 9.4%, Armco Metals Holdings ( CNAM), down 4.0% and Armco Metals Holdings ( AMCO), down 4.0%.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the wholesale industry could consider iShares Dow Jones US Cons Goods ( IYK) while those bearish on the wholesale industry could consider ProShares Ultra Sht Consumer Goods ( SZK).

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