Staples Inc. (SPLS): Today's Featured Specialty Retail 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.

Staples ( SPLS) pushed the Specialty Retail industry higher today making it today's featured specialty retail winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.5%. By the end of trading, Staples rose $0.30 (2.3%) to $13.39 on average volume. Throughout the day, 7,883,218 shares of Staples exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 8,471,300 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $13.15-$13.52 after having opened the day at $13.15 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $13.09. Other companies within the Specialty Retail industry that increased today were: Mecox Lane ( MCOX), up 4.7%, China Auto Logistics ( CALI), up 4.5%, Odyssey Marine Exploration ( OMEX), up 4.2% and Office Depot ( ODP), up 4.1%.

Staples, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as an office products company. It operates in three segments: North American Stores & Online, North American Commercial, and International Operations. Staples has a market cap of $8.6 billion and is part of the services sector. Shares are down 17.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 5 analysts that rate Staples a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 8 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Staples as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, attractive valuation levels, impressive record of earnings per share growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

On the negative front, United Online ( UNTD), down 8.0%, Big 5 Sporting Goods Corporation ( BGFV), down 3.9%, Charles & Colvard ( CTHR), down 3.5% and Sport Chalet ( SPCHA), down 3.5% , were all laggards within the specialty retail industry with PetSmart ( PETM) being today's specialty retail industry laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the specialty retail industry could consider SPDR S&P Retail ETF ( XRT) while those bearish on the specialty retail industry could consider ProShares Ultra Sht Consumer Goods ( SZK).

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