Abbott Laboratories (ABT): Today's Featured Health Services 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.

Abbott Laboratories ( ABT) pushed the Health Services industry lower today making it today's featured Health Services laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.1%. By the end of trading, Abbott Laboratories fell $0.58 (-1.5%) to $38.87 on average volume. Throughout the day, 11,386,503 shares of Abbott Laboratories exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 7,675,500 shares. The stock ranged in price between $38.78-$39.64 after having opened the day at $39.46 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $39.45. Other companies within the Health Services industry that declined today were: Response Genetics ( RGDX), down 9.5%, Inogen ( INGN), down 6.8%, Spherix ( SPEX), down 6.5% and Biolase ( BIOL), down 5.7%.

Abbott Laboratories is engaged in the discovery, development, manufacture, and sale of health care products worldwide. Abbott Laboratories has a market cap of $61.3 billion and is part of the health care sector. Shares are up 3.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 10 analysts that rate Abbott Laboratories a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Abbott Laboratories as a hold. 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 and impressive record of earnings per share growth. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that net income has been generally deteriorating over time.

On the positive front, IsoRay ( ISR), up 29.4%, BG Medicine ( BGMD), up 13.6%, CAS Medical Systems ( CASM), up 8.2% and BioTelemetry ( BEAT), up 7.8% , were all gainers within the health services industry with Cigna ( CI) being today's featured health services industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the health services industry could consider Health Care Select Sector SPDR ( XLV) while those bearish on the health services industry could consider ProShares Ultra Short Health Care ( RXD).

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