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EQT Corp (EQT): Today's Featured Utilities Winner

EQT (EQT) pushed the Utilities sector higher today making it today's featured utilities winner. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.2%. By the end of trading, EQT rose 89 cents (1.6%) to $56.07 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1.1 million shares of EQT exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.8 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $55-$56.29 after having opened the day at $55.04 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $55.18. Other companies within the Utilities sector that increased today were: China Hydroelectric Corporation (CHC), up 15.3%, Pure Cycle Corporation (PCYO), up 2.9%, Basic Sanitation Company of the State of Sa (SBS), up 2.8%, and Connecticut Water Service (CTWS), up 2.4%.

EQT Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates as an integrated energy company in the United States. It operates in three segments: EQT Production, EQT Midstream, and Distribution. EQT has a market cap of $8.35 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 22.2, below the average utilities industry P/E ratio of 22.5 and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 1.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate EQT a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and three rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates EQT as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

On the negative front, Transportadora de Gas del Sur (TGS), down 4.3%, GreenHunter Energy (GRH), down 3.8%, Distribution and Marketing Company of the N (EDN), down 3.6%, and Ocean Power Technologies (OPTT), down 3%, were all laggards within the utilities sector with PG&E (PCG) being today's utilities sector laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the utilities sector could consider Utilities Select Sector SPDR (XLU) while those bearish on the utilities sector could consider ProShares UltraShort Utilities (SDP).

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