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Are Business Services Stocks Lagging Crawford & Company (CRD.A) This Year?

For those looking to find strong Business Services stocks, it is prudent to search for companies in the group that are outperforming their peers. Has Crawford (CRD.A) been one of those stocks this year? By taking a look at the stock's year-to-date performance in comparison to its Business Services peers, we might be able to answer that question.

Crawford is a member of our Business Services group, which includes 334 different companies and currently sits at #11 in the Zacks Sector Rank. The Zacks Sector Rank considers 16 different groups, measuring the average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks within the sector to gauge the strength of each group.

The Zacks Rank is a successful stock-picking model that emphasizes earnings estimates and estimate revisions. The system highlights a number of different stocks that could be poised to outperform the broader market over the next one to three months. Crawford is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #1 (Strong Buy).

Within the past quarter, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for CRD.A's full-year earnings has moved 46.8% higher. This signals that analyst sentiment is improving and the stock's earnings outlook is more positive.

According to our latest data, CRD.A has moved about 77.9% on a year-to-date basis. Meanwhile, the Business Services sector has returned an average of 4.5% on a year-to-date basis. This shows that Crawford is outperforming its peers so far this year.

One other Business Services stock that has outperformed the sector so far this year is Harsco (HSC). The stock is up 38.3% year-to-date.

Over the past three months, Harsco's consensus EPS estimate for the current year has increased 44.4%. The stock currently has a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

Looking more specifically, Crawford belongs to the Business - Services industry, which includes 25 individual stocks and currently sits at #62 in the Zacks Industry Rank. On average, this group has gained an average of 10.4% so far this year, meaning that CRD.A is performing better in terms of year-to-date returns.

In contrast, Harsco falls under the Technology Services industry. Currently, this industry has 194 stocks and is ranked #114. Since the beginning of the year, the industry has moved +11.6%.

Going forward, investors interested in Business Services stocks should continue to pay close attention to Crawford and Harsco as they could maintain their solid performance.

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Zacks Investment Research