Vitamin Shoppe Inc. (VSI): 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.

Vitamin Shoppe ( VSI) pushed the Specialty Retail industry higher today making it today's featured specialty retail winner. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.3%. By the end of trading, Vitamin Shoppe rose $0.76 (1.6%) to $49.25 on light volume. Throughout the day, 496,320 shares of Vitamin Shoppe exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 721,600 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $48.07-$49.28 after having opened the day at $48.57 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $48.49. Other companies within the Specialty Retail industry that increased today were: Birks Group ( BGI), up 7.7%, Murphy USA ( MUSA), up 2.4%, Lentuo International ( LAS), up 2.4% and Perfumania Holdings ( PERF), up 2.1%.

Vitamin Shoppe, Inc., through its subsidiaries, operates as a specialty retailer and direct marketer of nutritional products in the United States. It operates through two segments, Retail and Direct. Vitamin Shoppe has a market cap of $1.5 billion and is part of the services sector. Shares are down 6.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 6 analysts that rate Vitamin Shoppe a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 6 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Vitamin Shoppe as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, good cash flow from operations and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

On the negative front, Barnes & Noble ( BKS), down 13.5%, China Auto Logistics ( CALI), down 4.5%, EZCorp ( EZPW), down 3.3% and Odyssey Marine Exploration ( OMEX), down 3.2% , were all laggards within the specialty retail industry with Tractor Supply ( TSCO) 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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