ED, EQT, FE, EXC And SO, Pushing Utilities Sector Downward

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.

One out of the three major indices are trading lower today with the Dow Jones Industrial Average ( ^DJI) trading up 14 points (0.1%) at 16,456 as of Friday, Jan. 3, 2014, 11:55 AM ET. The NYSE advances/declines ratio sits at 1,718 issues advancing vs. 1,181 declining with 172 unchanged.

The Utilities sector currently sits up 0.1% versus the S&P 500, which is unchanged. On the negative front, top decliners within the sector include Entergy ( ETR), down 1.7%, and Korea Electric Power ( KEP), down 1.0%.

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

5. Consolidated Edison ( ED) is one of the companies pushing the Utilities sector lower today. As of noon trading, Consolidated Edison is down $0.83 (-1.5%) to $53.13 on average volume. Thus far, 1.5 million shares of Consolidated Edison exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.1 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $53.05-$53.79 after having opened the day at $53.58 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $53.96.

Consolidated Edison, Inc., through its subsidiaries, engages in regulated electric, gas, and steam delivery businesses. Consolidated Edison has a market cap of $16.2 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are down 2.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are no analysts that rate Consolidated Edison a buy, 3 analysts rate it a sell, and 7 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Consolidated Edison as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, attractive valuation levels, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow. Get the full Consolidated Edison Ratings Report now.

STOCKS TO BUY: 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, EQT ( EQT) is down $1.53 (-1.7%) to $87.20 on light volume. Thus far, 258,613 shares of EQT exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1.4 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $87.17-$88.84 after having opened the day at $88.53 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $88.73.

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 $13.5 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are down 1.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 8 analysts that rate EQT a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates EQT as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations, compelling growth in net income and solid stock price performance. Although the company may harbor some minor weaknesses, we feel they are unlikely to have a significant impact on results. Get the full EQT Ratings Report now.

STOCKS TO BUY: 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, FirstEnergy ( FE) is down $0.48 (-1.5%) to $31.90 on light volume. Thus far, 1.8 million shares of FirstEnergy exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.0 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $31.77-$32.22 after having opened the day at $32.00 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $32.38.

FirstEnergy Corp., a diversified energy holding company, engages in the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity in the United States. The company operates in Regulated Distribution, Regulated Transmission, and Competitive Energy Services segments. FirstEnergy has a market cap of $13.8 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are down 1.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate FirstEnergy a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates FirstEnergy as a hold. The company's strongest point has been its a solid financial position based on a variety of debt and liquidity measures that we have looked at. At the same time, however, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity and poor profit margins. Get the full FirstEnergy Ratings Report now.

STOCKS TO BUY: 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, Exelon ( EXC) is down $0.60 (-2.2%) to $26.58 on average volume. Thus far, 4.3 million shares of Exelon exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 8.3 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $26.45-$26.97 after having opened the day at $26.90 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $27.17.

Exelon Corporation, a utility services holding company, engages in the energy generation and distribution business in the United States. Exelon has a market cap of $23.5 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are down 0.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are no analysts that rate Exelon a buy, 3 analysts rate it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Exelon as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, attractive valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself and poor profit margins. Get the full Exelon Ratings Report now.

STOCKS TO BUY: 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, Southern ( SO) is down $0.27 (-0.7%) to $40.42 on light volume. Thus far, 1.5 million shares of Southern exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.8 million shares. The stock has ranged in price between $40.40-$40.76 after having opened the day at $40.67 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $40.69.

The Southern Company, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a public electric utility company. Southern has a market cap of $36.2 billion and is part of the utilities industry. Shares are down 1.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are no analysts that rate Southern a buy, 2 analysts rate it a sell, and 12 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Southern as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its good cash flow from operations and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself. Get the full Southern Ratings Report now.

STOCKS TO BUY: 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 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).

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