Gap Inc. (GPS): Today's Featured Services 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.

Gap ( GPS) pushed the Services sector higher today making it today's featured services winner. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, Gap rose $0.43 (1.0%) to $42.77 on average volume. Throughout the day, 4,328,447 shares of Gap exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5,279,300 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $42.17-$43.00 after having opened the day at $42.26 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $42.34. Other companies within the Services sector that increased today were: Strayer Education ( STRA), up 37.9%, Shutterstock ( SSTK), up 18.9%, LoJack Corporation ( LOJN), up 16.2% and Tile Shop Holdings ( TTS), up 13.9%.

The Gap, Inc. operates as an apparel retail company. It offers apparel, accessories, and personal care products for men, women, children, and babies under the Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Piperlime, Athleta, and Intermix brands worldwide. Gap has a market cap of $18.9 billion and is part of the retail industry. Shares are up 8.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 10 analysts that rate Gap a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 16 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Gap as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, notable return on equity, increase in stock price during the past year and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the negative front, National CineMedia ( NCMI), down 12.3%, United Online ( UNTD), down 12.1%, MDC Partners ( MDCA), down 11.6% and Seanergy Maritime Holdings ( SHIP), down 11.1% , were all laggards within the services sector with Liberty Global ( LBTYA) being today's services sector laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the services sector could consider iShares Dow Jones US Cons Services ( IYC) while those bearish on the services sector could consider ProShares Ultra Short Consumer Sers ( SCC).

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