CenterPoint Energy Inc (CNP): Today's Highlighted Winner For Utilities

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.

CenterPoint Energy ( CNP) pushed the Utilities sector higher today making it today's featured utilities winner. The sector as a whole closed the day down 0.3%. By the end of trading, CenterPoint Energy rose 32 cents (1.4%) to $23.44 on average volume. Throughout the day, 5.1 million shares of CenterPoint Energy exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.5 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $22.95-$23.47 after having opened the day at $23 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $23.12. Other companies within the Utilities sector that increased today were: Pure Cycle Corporation ( PCYO), up 8%, U.S. Geothermal ( HTM), up 5.3%, Inergy L.P ( NRGY), up 2.9%, and National Electricity Company of Chile ( EOC), up 2.7%.
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CenterPoint Energy, Inc. operates as a public utility holding company in the United States. CenterPoint Energy has a market cap of $9.89 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 23.8, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 19.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are six analysts that rate CenterPoint Energy a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and seven rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates CenterPoint Energy as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, increase in net income, growth in earnings per share and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated.

On the negative front, American DG Energy ( ADGE), down 4%, Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras ( EBR), down 3.4%, Ocean Power Technologies ( OPTT), down 3.2%, and Korea Electric Power ( KEP), down 2.9%, were all laggards within the utilities sector with FirstEnergy ( FE) 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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