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The Retail industry as a whole closed the day down 1.5% versus the S&P 500, which was down 0.8%. Laggards within the Retail industry included Acorn International ( ATV), down 2.0%, Liberty Interactive ( LINTB), down 4.7%, Appliance Recycling Centers Of America ( ARCI), down 1.6%, Wet Seal ( WTSL), down 46.6% and Village Super Market ( VLGEA), down 1.6%.

TheStreet Ratings Group would like to highlight 3 stocks that pushed the industry lower today:

Appliance Recycling Centers Of America ( ARCI) is one of the companies that pushed the Retail industry lower today. Appliance Recycling Centers Of America was down $0.05 (1.6%) to $2.98 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 38,324 shares of Appliance Recycling Centers Of America exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 19,200 shares. The stock ranged in price between $2.95-$3.03 after having opened the day at $3.02 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $3.03.

Appliance Recycling Centers of America, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, sells new household appliances through a chain of company-owned retail stores under the ApplianceSmart name. The company operates in two segments, Recycling and Retail. Appliance Recycling Centers Of America has a market cap of $17.5 million and is part of the services sector. Shares are up 10.2% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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TheStreet Ratings rates Appliance Recycling Centers Of America as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, attractive valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income, poor profit margins and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on ARCI go as follows:

  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 9.8%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 0.3%. This growth in revenue does not appear to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, displayed by a decline in earnings per share.
  • The debt-to-equity ratio is somewhat low, currently at 0.81, and is less than that of the industry average, implying that there has been a relatively successful effort in the management of debt levels. Although the company had a strong debt-to-equity ratio, its quick ratio of 0.75 is somewhat weak and could be cause for future problems.
  • The gross profit margin for APPLIANCE RECYCLING CTR AMER is currently lower than what is desirable, coming in at 26.86%. It has decreased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 1.65% trails that of the industry average.
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Specialty Retail industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 51.0% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from $1.13 million to $0.56 million.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: Appliance Recycling Centers Of America Ratings Report

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At the close, Liberty Interactive ( LINTB) was down $1.38 (4.7%) to $28.31 on light volume. Throughout the day, 484 shares of Liberty Interactive exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 800 shares. The stock ranged in price between $28.24-$28.44 after having opened the day at $28.44 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $29.69.

Liberty Interactive has a market cap of $868.4 million and is part of the services sector. Shares are unchanged year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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Acorn International ( ATV) was another company that pushed the Retail industry lower today. Acorn International was down $0.03 (2.0%) to $1.46 on average volume. Throughout the day, 7,957 shares of Acorn International exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 8,800 shares. The stock ranged in price between $1.43-$1.68 after having opened the day at $1.63 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $1.49.

Acorn International, Inc., an integrated multi-platform marketing company, develops, promotes, and sells a portfolio of proprietary-branded products; and third parties products. The company operates two sales platforms, including integrated direct sales and a nationwide distribution network. Acorn International has a market cap of $41.9 million and is part of the services sector. Shares are down 11.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Acorn International as a sell. Among the areas we feel are negative, one of the most important has been an overall disappointing return on equity.

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Highlights from TheStreet Ratings analysis on ATV go as follows:

  • Return on equity has greatly decreased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of major weakness within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Internet & Catalog Retail industry and the overall market, ACORN INTERNATIONAL INC -ADR's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • 39.76% is the gross profit margin for ACORN INTERNATIONAL INC -ADR which we consider to be strong. Regardless of ATV's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, ATV's net profit margin of -28.10% significantly underperformed when compared to the industry average.
  • ACORN INTERNATIONAL INC -ADR has improved earnings per share by 15.4% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has not demonstrated a clear trend in earnings over the past 2 years, making it difficult to accurately predict earnings for the coming year. During the past fiscal year, ACORN INTERNATIONAL INC -ADR reported poor results of -$1.45 versus -$0.59 in the prior year.
  • The revenue fell significantly faster than the industry average of 13.0%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues fell by 44.8%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.
  • ATV's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.08 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt levels. To add to this, ATV has a quick ratio of 2.00, which demonstrates the ability of the company to cover short-term liquidity needs.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: Acorn International Ratings Report

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