Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc (HOT): Today's Featured Leisure 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.

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide ( HOT) pushed the Leisure industry higher today making it today's featured leisure winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.5%. By the end of trading, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide rose $1.46 (1.9%) to $80.10 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 2,371,529 shares of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,507,600 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $78.75-$80.31 after having opened the day at $79.03 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $78.64. Other companies within the Leisure industry that increased today were: Ruth's Hospitality Group ( RUTH), up 10.2%, SFX Entertainment ( SFXE), up 6.0%, Caesars Acquisition ( CACQ), up 5.4% and Noodles & Co Class A ( NDLS), up 4.1%.

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. operates as a hotel and leisure company worldwide. The company operates luxury and upscale full-service hotels, resorts, residences, retreats, select-service hotels, and extended stay hotels under the St. Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide has a market cap of $14.9 billion and is part of the services sector. Shares are down 1.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 14 analysts that rate Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 6 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide 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, notable return on equity, reasonable valuation levels and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the negative front, Nevada Gold & Casinos ( UWN), down 4.9%, Diversified Restaurant Holdings ( BAGR), down 3.1%, InterContinental Hotels Group ( IHG), down 3.0% and Town Sports International Holdings ( CLUB), down 2.5%.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the leisure industry could consider PowerShares Dynamic Leisure&Entert ( PEJ) while those bearish on the leisure industry could consider ProShares Ultra Sht Consumer Services ( SCC).

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