The

utilities

sector closed the day up 1.4%.

Active Power Inc

(

ACPW

),

Atmos Energy

(

ATO

),

CenterPoint Energy Inc

(

CNP

), and

Chesapeake Utilities

(

CPK

) were all winners today within the utilities sector with

American Electric Power Co Inc

(

TheStreet Recommends

AEP

) being today's featured utilities winner. American Electric Power Co Inc rose 76 cents (2%) to $38.46 on average volume. Throughout the day, 3.8 million shares of American Electric Power Co Inc exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 4.7 million shares.

American Electric Power Company, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electric power to retail customers. The company generates electricity using coal and lignite, natural gas, nuclear, and hydroelectric energy. American Electric Power Co Inc has a market cap of $18.3 billion and is part of the

utilities

industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 12.7, equal to the average utilities industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 4.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates American Electric Power Co as a

buy

. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, revenue growth, good cash flow from operations, impressive record of earnings per share growth and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally poor debt management on most measures that we evaluated.

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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