W.W. Grainger Inc. (GWW): Today's Featured Wholesale 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.

W.W. Grainger ( GWW) pushed the Wholesale industry lower today making it today's featured Wholesale laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, W.W. Grainger fell $5.05 (-2.0%) to $248.34 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 1,029,315 shares of W.W. Grainger exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 379,400 shares. The stock ranged in price between $247.78-$253.07 after having opened the day at $249.44 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $253.39. Other companies within the Wholesale industry that declined today were: InfoSonics Corporation ( IFON), down 12.3%, China Auto Logistics ( CALI), down 11.4%, Forward Industries ( FORD), down 5.2% and Coast Distribution System ( CRV), down 2.8%.

W.W. Grainger, Inc. engages in the distribution of maintenance, repair, and operating supplies, as well as other related products and services for businesses and institutions primarily in the United States and Canada. W.W. Grainger has a market cap of $17.7 billion and is part of the services sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 23.0, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 25.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 7 analysts that rate W.W. Grainger a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 8 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates W.W. Grainger as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, revenue growth and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. 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 positive front, Wesco Aircraft Holdings ( WAIR), up 6.5%, Chefs Warehouse Holdings ( CHEF), up 5.5%, Houston Wire & Cable Company ( HWCC), up 4.6% and Armco Metals Holdings ( AMCO), up 4.3% , were all gainers within the wholesale industry with Rockwell Automation ( ROK) being today's featured wholesale industry leader.

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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