5 Stocks Pushing The Utilities Sector Higher

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

One out of the three major indices are trading lower today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading down 15 points (-0.1%) at 14,074 as of Monday, March 4, 2013, 12:05 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,220 issues advancing vs. 1,591 declining with 184 unchanged.

The Utilities sector currently sits up 0.2% versus the S&P 500, which is unchanged. Top gainers within the sector include Edison International ( EIX), up 1.1%, PG&E ( PCG), up 0.9% and TransCanada ( TRP), up 0.8%. A company within the sector that fell today was Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras ( EBR.B), up 1.0%.

TheStreet Ratings group would like to highlight 5 stocks pushing the sector higher today:

5. Aqua America ( WTR) is one of the companies pushing the Utilities sector higher today. As of noon trading, Aqua America is up $0.77 (2.6%) to $29.85 on average volume Thus far, 378,367 shares of Aqua America exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 630,900 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $29.27-$29.99 after having opened the day at $29.35 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $29.08.

Aqua America, Inc., through its subsidiaries, operates regulated utilities that provide water or wastewater services in the United States. Aqua America has a market cap of $4.1 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 22.1, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 14.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 5 analysts that rate Aqua America a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Aqua America as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, revenue growth, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated. Get the full Aqua America Ratings Report now.

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