Today's Stocks Driving Success For The Utilities Sector

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

All three major indices are trading up today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 22 points (0.1%) at 15,424 as of Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2013, 12:55 PM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,875 issues advancing vs. 1,030 declining with 132 unchanged.

The Utilities sector currently sits up 0.1% versus the S&P 500, which is up 0.2%. A company within the sector that increased today was NorthWestern Corporation ( NWE), up 3.3%.

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

5. AGL Resources ( GAS) is one of the companies pushing the Utilities sector higher today. As of noon trading, AGL Resources is up $0.53 (1.1%) to $46.90 on light volume. Thus far, 193,154 shares of AGL Resources exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 545,800 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $46.29-$46.91 after having opened the day at $46.42 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $46.37.

AGL Resources Inc., an energy services holding company, distributes natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and governmental customers in Illinois, Georgia, Virginia, New Jersey, Florida, Tennessee, and Maryland. AGL Resources has a market cap of $5.4 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 14.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there is 1 analyst that rates AGL Resources a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates AGL Resources as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, reasonable valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins. Get the full AGL Resources Ratings Report now.

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

4. As of noon trading, American Water Works ( AWK) is up $0.31 (0.8%) to $40.70 on light volume. Thus far, 250,088 shares of American Water Works exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 830,500 shares. The stock has ranged in price between $40.39-$40.71 after having opened the day at $40.44 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $40.39.

American Water Works Company, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides water and wastewater services in the United States and Canada. The company's Regulated Businesses segment offers water and wastewater services to approximately 1,500 communities in 16 states. American Water Works has a market cap of $7.1 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 7.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 14 analysts that rate American Water Works a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates American Water Works as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its expanding profit margins and increase in stock price during the past year. 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 American Water Works Ratings Report now.

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

3. As of noon trading, Ameren ( AEE) is up $0.21 (0.6%) to $35.24 on average volume. Thus far, 1.1 million shares of Ameren exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $35.03-$35.25 after having opened the day at $35.07 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $35.03.

Ameren Corporation operates as a public utility holding company in the United States. It operates in three segments: Ameren Missouri, Ameren Illinois, and Merchant Generation. Ameren has a market cap of $8.4 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 12.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate Ameren a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Ameren as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full Ameren Ratings Report now.

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

2. As of noon trading, Calpine ( CPN) is up $0.14 (0.7%) to $19.82 on light volume. Thus far, 958,108 shares of Calpine exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.9 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $19.60-$19.83 after having opened the day at $19.66 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $19.68.

Calpine Corporation, a wholesale power generation company, owns and operates natural gas-fired and geothermal power plants in North America. It operates natural gas-fired combustion turbines and renewable geothermal conventional steam turbines, as well as cogeneration power plants. Calpine has a market cap of $8.6 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 7.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 9 analysts that rate Calpine a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 4 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Calpine as a sell. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its generally high debt management risk and poor profit margins. Get the full Calpine Ratings Report now.

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

1. As of noon trading, NRG Energy ( NRG) is up $0.21 (0.8%) to $28.16 on average volume. Thus far, 1.4 million shares of NRG Energy exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.5 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $27.82-$28.17 after having opened the day at $27.97 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $27.95.

NRG Energy, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, operates as an integrated wholesale power generation and retail electricity company. The company engages in the ownership, development, construction, expansion, modification, refurbishment, and operation of power generation facilities. NRG Energy has a market cap of $8.9 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are up 19.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 9 analysts that rate NRG Energy a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 1 rates it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates NRG Energy as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance, reasonable valuation levels, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and notable return on equity. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income. Get the full NRG Energy Ratings Report now.

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

If you are interested in one of these 5 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).

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