J.C. Penney Co Inc (JCP): Today's Featured Retail 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.

J.C. Penney ( JCP) pushed the Retail industry lower today making it today's featured Retail laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.7%. By the end of trading, J.C. Penney fell $0.55 (-6.5%) to $7.86 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 72,710,351 shares of J.C. Penney exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 19,778,900 shares. The stock ranged in price between $7.76-$8.51 after having opened the day at $8.44 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $8.41. Other companies within the Retail industry that declined today were: China Jo-Jo Drugstores ( CJJD), down 6.5%, New York & Company ( NWY), down 3.2%, Coastal Contacts ( COA), down 2.8% and Chico's FAS ( CHS), down 2.6%.

J. C. Penney Company, Inc., through its subsidiary, J. C. Penney Corporation, Inc., operates department stores. The company sells family apparel and footwear, accessories, fine and fashion jewelry, beauty products, and home furnishings. J.C. Penney has a market cap of $2.6 billion and is part of the services sector. Shares are down 39.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 5 analysts that rate J.C. Penney a buy, 4 analysts rate it a sell, and 9 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates J.C. Penney as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income, generally high debt management risk, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins.

On the positive front, Conn's ( CONN), up 6.1%, Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage ( NGVC), up 5.3%, Pharmerica Corporation ( PMC), up 4.9% and Sprouts Farmers Market ( SFM), up 4.6% , were all gainers within the retail industry with Dollar General Corporation ( DG) 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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