Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

American Electric Power

(

AEP

) pushed the Utilities sector higher today making it today's featured utilities winner. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.6%. By the end of trading, American Electric Power rose $0.61 (1.2%) to $49.37 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 4,675,392 shares of American Electric Power exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2,653,800 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $48.53-$49.47 after having opened the day at $48.85 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $48.76. Other companies within the Utilities sector that increased today were:

Fuelcell Energy

(

FCEL

), up 19.8%,

Atlantic Power Corporation

(

AT

), up 9.6%,

Ocean Power Technologies

(

OPTT

), up 5.9% and

Pure Cycle Corporation

(

PCYO

), up 4.0%.

American Electric Power Company, Inc., a public utility holding company, is engaged in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity for sale to retail and wholesale customers. American Electric Power has a market cap of $23.8 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 4.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 10 analysts that rate American Electric Power a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 6 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 revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, notable return on equity and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

On the negative front,

U.S. Geothermal

(

HTM

), down 12.0%,

EQT

(

EQT

), down 3.3% and

Niska Gas Storage Partners

(

NKA

), down 1.6%.

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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