The S&P 500 Utilities sector rose 0.12% on December 20. AES Corp (AES) and Centerpoint Energy (CNP) were the top performers in the utilities sector on December 20. The Fed’s hawkish stance along with the accelerated interest rate hike process in 2017 might take the shine out of the utilities sector. The utilities sector is generally considered as a “safe-haven” investment. AES Corp distributes and generates electric power. It rose 0.84% to $11.94 on Tuesday. At the end of last week, AES Corp increased its quarterly dividend by 9% from $0.11 per share to $0.12 per share.
The S&P 500 Consumer Staples fell 0.3% on December 20. After rising to the highest levels since the beginning of November, the Consumer staples sector pulled back on Tuesday. Estee Lauder (EL) and Constellation Brands (STZ) were the top and bottom performers in the consumer staples industry on December 20. Constellation Brands produces and markets wine, beer, and spirits. It fell 4.0% to $150.45. On December 19, Constellation Brands announced that it sold its Canadian wine business. The company sold its wine business to the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan for ~$1.03 billion Canadian dollars.
The Dow Jones US Select Dividend Index (DJDVP) tracks the performance of major dividend-yielding stocks in the US. On December 20, DJDVP rose 0.4%. On December 20, Ensign Group (ENSG) announced a hike in its quarterly dividend. The quarterly dividend rose 6.3% from $0.04 to $0.043. It pushed Ensign stock to the highest levels since April. On December 20, Andersons rose as high as $23.18 and closed the day at $22.85—a gain of 0.62%.