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 was unchanged today. By the end of trading, J.C. Penney fell $0.26 (-3.0%) to $8.42 on average volume. Throughout the day, 24,687,852 shares of J.C. Penney exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 29,390,200 shares. The stock ranged in price between $8.32-$8.68 after having opened the day at $8.68 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $8.68. Other companies within the Retail industry that declined today were: E-Commerce China Dangdang ( DANG), down 10.8%, QKL Stores ( QKLS), down 6.8%, Aeropostale ( ARO), down 5.2% and Vipshop Holdings ( VIPS), down 4.8%.

J. C. Penney Company, Inc., through its subsidiary, J. C. Penney Corporation, Inc., operates department stores. It 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 5.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 3 analysts that rate J.C. Penney a buy, 5 analysts rate it a sell, and 12 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 generally high debt management risk, disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow, generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself and poor profit margins.

On the positive front, Fairway Group Holdings Corp Class A ( FWM), up 5.8%, Fresh Market ( TFM), up 5.8%, Pantry ( PTRY), up 5.1% and U.S. Auto Parts Network ( PRTS), up 4.7% , were all gainers within the retail industry with Sears Holdings Corporation ( SHLD) 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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