Let’s take a look at how utilities fared in terms of total returns in the last one year. The Utilities Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLU) returned more than 1%, while broader markets returned 18% in the last one year. Total returns consider stock appreciation as well as dividend payments in a particular period.
Utilities (IDU), which are popular for stable dividends, notably lagged behind peers in the last one year. Their dividends grew at a fair rate, but the stocks tumbled due to several reasons. The tax reforms and interest rate hike in December 2017 and overvaluation concerns have pulled utilities down in the last few months.
You can read about top utilities’ dividend profiles in Analyzing the Biggest S&P 500 Utilities’ Dividend Profiles.