Kirby Corp (KEX): Today's Featured Transportation 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.

Kirby ( KEX) pushed the Transportation industry higher today making it today's featured transportation winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.2%. By the end of trading, Kirby rose $7.22 (7.2%) to $107.84 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 990,985 shares of Kirby exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 469,000 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $103.50-$109.86 after having opened the day at $103.50 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $100.62. Other companies within the Transportation industry that increased today were: Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings ( AAWW), up 13.1%, Republic Airways Holdings ( RJET), up 10.0%, Eagle Bulk Shipping ( EGLE), up 9.6% and Box Ships ( TEU), up 6.3%.

Kirby Corporation, through its subsidiaries, provides marine transportation and diesel engine services primarily in the United States. Its Marine Transportation segment provides transportation services for the inland and coastal markets. Kirby has a market cap of $5.7 billion and is part of the services sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 23.8, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 1.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 6 analysts that rate Kirby a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Kirby as a buy. 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, growth in earnings per share, good cash flow from operations and expanding profit margins. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook.

On the negative front, Newlead Holdings ( NEWL), down 21.7%, American Railcar Industries ( ARII), down 14.2%, YRC Worldwide ( YRCW), down 6.6% and Radiant Logistics ( RLGT), down 4.8% , were all laggards within the transportation industry with Norfolk Southern ( NSC) being today's transportation industry laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the transportation industry could consider iShares Dow Jones Transportation ( IYT) while those bearish on the transportation industry could consider ProShares UltraShort Industrials ( SIJ).

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