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

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

AES ( AES) pushed the Utilities sector higher today making it today's featured utilities winner. The sector as a whole closed the day down 1.2%. By the end of trading, AES rose 12 cents (1.1%) to $10.66 on average volume. Throughout the day, 5.6 million shares of AES exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.4 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $10.55-$10.70 after having opened the day at $10.57 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $10.54. Other companies within the Utilities sector that increased today were: Transportadora de Gas del Sur ( TGS), up 6.8%, U.S. Geothermal ( HTM), up 3.1%, and Pure Cycle Corporation ( PCYO), up 2.9%.
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The AES Corporation, a power company, operates a portfolio of electricity generation and distribution businesses. Its Generation business owns and/or operates power plants to generate and sell power to wholesale customers, such as utilities and other intermediaries. AES has a market cap of $7.82 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 17.4, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 11.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are five analysts that rate AES a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and one rates it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates AES as a hold. Among the primary strengths of the company is its reasonable valuation levels, considering its current price compared to earnings, book value and other measures. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself, generally higher debt management risk and poor profit margins.

On the negative front, Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras ( EBR), down 9%, GreenHunter Energy ( GRH), down 8.9%, Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras ( EBR.B), down 8%, and Clean Energy Fuels Corporation ( CLNE), down 4%, were all laggards within the utilities sector with NRG Energy ( NRG) 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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