American Electric Power Co Inc (AEP): Today's Featured Utilities Laggard

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

American Electric Power ( AEP) pushed the Utilities sector lower today making it today's featured Utilities laggard. The sector as a whole closed the day down 0.7%. By the end of trading, American Electric Power fell $0.55 (-1.2%) to $45.36 on average volume. Throughout the day, 3,262,950 shares of American Electric Power exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2,849,900 shares. The stock ranged in price between $45.31-$45.84 after having opened the day at $45.56 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $45.91. Other companies within the Utilities sector that declined today were: Portland General Electric Company ( POR), down 4.8%, Fuelcell Energy ( FCEL), down 4.7%, Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras ( EBR), down 4.2% and Huaneng Power International ( HNP), down 3.9%.
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American Electric Power Company, Inc., a public utility holding company, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electric power to retail customers. The company generates electricity using coal and lignite, natural gas, nuclear energy, and hydroelectric energy. American Electric Power has a market cap of $22.4 billion and is part of the utilities industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 18.1, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 8.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 5 analysts that rate American Electric Power a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 10 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, increase in stock price during the past year and reasonable valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the positive front, Beacon Power ( BCON), down 6.9%, U.S. Geothermal ( HTM), down 4.7%, China Hydroelectric Corporation ( CHC), down 3.6% and GreenHunter Resources ( GRH), down 2.7%.

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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