All three major indices are trading down today with the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

(

^DJI

) trading down 192 points (-1.2%) at 16,087 as of Thursday, Sept. 24, 2015, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 732 issues advancing vs. 2,239 declining with 161 unchanged.

The Utilities sector currently sits down 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which is down 0.8%. A company within the sector that increased today was

Duke Energy Corporation

(

DUK

), up 1.1%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include

Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners

(

BEP

), down 2.6%,

AES Corporation

(

AES

), down 2.4%,

TransCanada

(

TRP

), down 0.7% and

Exelon

(

EXC

), down 0.6%.

TheStreet would like to highlight 3 stocks pushing the sector higher today:

3.

PPL

(

PPL

) is one of the companies pushing the Utilities sector higher today. As of noon trading, PPL is up $0.39 (1.2%) to $31.47 on average volume. Thus far, 2.4 million shares of PPL exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4.7 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $30.92-$31.51 after having opened the day at $31.00 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $31.08.

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PPL Corporation, a utility company, delivers electricity and natural gas in the United States and the United Kingdom. It serves 321,000 natural gas and 397,000 electric customers in Louisville and 16 surrounding counties; and 543,000 customers in 77 Kentucky counties and 5 counties in Virginia. PPL has a market cap of $20.8 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 11.8, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 24.4. Shares are down 14.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 7 analysts who rate PPL a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates

PPL

as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its notable return on equity, growth in earnings per share and expanding profit margins. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full

PPL Ratings Report

now.

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2. As of noon trading,

American Electric Power

(

AEP

) is up $0.34 (0.6%) to $55.36 on average volume. Thus far, 1.4 million shares of American Electric Power exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.8 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $54.74-$55.60 after having opened the day at $54.85 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $55.02.

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American Electric Power Company, Inc., a public utility holding company, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity for sale to retail and wholesale customers. American Electric Power has a market cap of $26.8 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.4, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 24.4. Shares are down 9.4% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 7 analysts who rate American Electric Power a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates

American Electric Power

as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its growth in earnings per share, increase in net income, solid stock price performance and reasonable valuation levels. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated. Get the full

American Electric Power Ratings Report

now.

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1. As of noon trading,

Southern

(

SO

) is up $0.29 (0.7%) to $43.24 on average volume. Thus far, 2.3 million shares of Southern exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $42.83-$43.36 after having opened the day at $42.83 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $42.95.

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The Southern Company, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a public electric utility company. Southern has a market cap of $39.1 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.2, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 24.4. Shares are down 12.5% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there is 1 analyst who rates Southern a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates

Southern

as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated. Get the full

Southern Ratings Report

now.

EXCLUSIVE OFFER: See inside Jim Cramer's multi-million dollar charitable trust portfolio to see the stocks he thinks could be potential winners. Click here to see his holdings for 14-days FREE.

If you are interested in one of these 3 stocks, 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

).