Two out of the three major indices are trading up today with the

Dow Jones Industrial Average

(

^DJI

) trading up 68 points (0.4%) at 16,398 as of Friday, Sept. 11, 2015, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,332 issues advancing vs. 1,639 declining with 143 unchanged.

The Utilities sector currently sits down 0.4% versus the S&P 500, which is unchanged. Top gainers within the sector include

Consolidated Edison

(

ED

), up 1.1%,

PG&E

(

PCG

), up 1.0% and

Duke Energy Corporation

(

DUK

), up 0.6%. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include

TransCanada

(

TRP

), down 1.8%, and

Enersis

(

ENI

), down 1.0%.

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

3.

Huaneng Power International

(

HNP

) is one of the companies pushing the Utilities sector higher today. As of noon trading, Huaneng Power International is up $0.89 (2.0%) to $45.34 on light volume. Thus far, 18,683 shares of Huaneng Power International exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 55,900 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $44.85-$45.34 after having opened the day at $44.85 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $44.45.

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Huaneng Power International, Inc., an independent power producer, generates and sells electricity and heat to the regional or provincial grid companies in the People's Republic of China and Singapore. Huaneng Power International has a market cap of $15.6 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 107.9, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 24.5. Shares are down 17.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there is 1 analyst who rates Huaneng Power International a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates

Huaneng Power International

as a

hold

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its growth in earnings per share, notable return on equity and increase in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including generally higher debt management risk and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself. Get the full

Huaneng Power International Ratings Report

now.

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2. As of noon trading,

Xcel Energy

(

XEL

) is up $0.25 (0.8%) to $32.96 on light volume. Thus far, 894,648 shares of Xcel Energy exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.2 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $32.48-$32.96 after having opened the day at $32.54 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $32.71.

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Xcel Energy Inc., through its subsidiaries, engages primarily in the generation, purchase, transmission, distribution, and sale of electricity in the United States. It operates through Regulated Electric Utility, Regulated Natural Gas Utility, and All Other segments. Xcel Energy has a market cap of $16.5 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.0, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 24.5. Shares are down 8.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 6 analysts who rate Xcel Energy a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates

Xcel Energy

as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, good cash flow from operations and solid stock price performance. 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

Xcel Energy Ratings Report

now.

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1. As of noon trading,

Southern

(

SO

) is up $0.23 (0.5%) to $42.53 on light volume. Thus far, 2.0 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 $42.08-$42.57 after having opened the day at $42.15 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $42.30.

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The Southern Company, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a public electric utility company. Southern has a market cap of $38.6 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.0, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 24.5. Shares are down 13.9% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday. 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, growth in earnings per share, increase in net income and good cash flow from operations. 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.

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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

).