4 Stocks Boosting 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

All three major indices are trading up today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 72 points (0.5%) at 14,749 as of Thursday, April 25, 2013, 12:50 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 2,049 issues advancing vs. 833 declining with 158 unchanged.

The Utilities sector currently sits up 0.5% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.7%. A company within the sector that fell today was Korea Electric Power ( KEP), up 2.93.

TheStreet Ratings group would like to highlight 4 stocks pushing the sector higher today:

4. PVR Partners ( PVR) is one of the companies pushing the Utilities sector higher today. As of noon trading, PVR Partners is up $1.63 (6.86) to $25.36 on average volume Thus far, 402,895 shares of PVR Partners exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 621,400 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $23.90-$25.44 after having opened the day at $23.90 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $23.73.

PVR Partners, L.P. engages in the gathering and processing of natural gas; and management of coal and natural resource properties in the United States. The company operates in three segments: Eastern Midstream, Midcontinent Midstream, and Coal and Natural Resource Management. PVR Partners has a market cap of $2.3 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are down 8.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates PVR Partners as a hold. The company's strongest point has been its expanding profit margins. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, generally higher debt management risk and disappointing return on equity. Get the full PVR Partners Ratings Report now.

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3. As of noon trading, AES ( AES) is up $0.25 (1.89) to $13.49 on average volume Thus far, 3.2 million shares of AES exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 6.3 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $13.16-$13.51 after having opened the day at $13.25 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $13.24.

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 $9.8 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 22.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates AES as a hold. Among the primary strengths of the company is its revenue growth. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, generally higher debt management risk and disappointing return on equity. Get the full AES Ratings Report now.

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2. As of noon trading, EQT ( EQT) is up $6.51 (9.49) to $75.09 on heavy volume Thus far, 2.1 million shares of EQT exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $71.25-$75.59 after having opened the day at $71.25 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $68.58.

EQT Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, operates as an integrated energy company in the United States. It operates in three segments: EQT Production, EQT Midstream, and Distribution. EQT has a market cap of $10.2 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 55.6, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 16.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates EQT as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full EQT Ratings Report now.

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1. As of noon trading, Duke Energy Corporation ( DUK) is up $0.45 (0.60) to $75.17 on light volume Thus far, 1.0 million shares of Duke Energy Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.9 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $74.70-$75.20 after having opened the day at $75.01 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $74.72.

Duke Energy Corporation operates as an energy company in the United States and Latin America. The company operates in three segments: U.S. Franchised Electric and Gas, Commercial Power, and International Energy. The U.S. Duke Energy Corporation has a market cap of $52.5 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 24.2, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 16.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates Duke Energy Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, increase in net income, good cash flow from operations, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and solid stock price performance. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity. Get the full Duke Energy Corporation Ratings Report now.

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If you are interested in one of these 4 stocks, 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).

A reminder about TheStreet Ratings group: 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.
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