Red Hat Inc. (RHT): Today's Featured Computer Software & 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.

Red Hat ( RHT) pushed the Computer Software & Services industry lower today making it today's featured Computer Software & Services laggard. The industry as a whole was unchanged today. By the end of trading, Red Hat fell $3.90 (-7.0%) to $52.23 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 7,071,627 shares of Red Hat exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,487,600 shares. The stock ranged in price between $51.80-$55.35 after having opened the day at $55.22 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $56.13. Other companies within the Computer Software & Services industry that declined today were: Castlight Health Inc Class B ( CSLT), down 8.7%, Wave Systems Corporation ( WAVX), down 7.5%, TSR ( TSRI), down 6.1% and MiX Telematics Ltd ADR ( MIXT), down 4.9%.

Red Hat, Inc. provides open source software solutions primarily to enterprise customers worldwide. The company develops and offers operating system, middleware, virtualization, storage, and cloud technologies. Red Hat has a market cap of $10.6 billion and is part of the technology sector. Shares are up 0.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 16 analysts that rate Red Hat a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Red Hat as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, Bridgeline Digital ( BLIN), up 12.5%, Astea International ( ATEA), up 8.7%, ChyronHego ( CHYR), up 8.1% and China Mobile Games and Entertainment Group ( CMGE), up 6.9% , were all gainers within the computer software & services industry with Sap ( SAP) being today's featured computer software & services industry leader.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the computer software & services industry could consider iShares S&P NA Tech Software Idx ( IGV) while those bearish on the computer software & services industry could consider ProShares Ultra Short Technology ( REW).

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