Utility stocks outperformed broader markets last week. The Utilities Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLU) rose 1.4% while the S&P 500 continued to march higher, rising 1.2%. The S&P 500 closed at an all-time high after strong GDP data last week. The benchmark ten-year Treasury yield trended lower and closed at 2.5%. Utility stocks and Treasury yields usually trade inversely.
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Leaders and stragglers
NextEra Energy (NEE) stock rose more than 1.2% last week. It reported Q1 earnings on April 23. NextEra Energy posted adjusted EPS of $2.20, beating the consensus estimate for the quarter ended March 31. In the same period last year, NextEra Energy had EPS of $1.96.
American Electric Power Company (AEP) also beat analysts’ EPS estimates last week. Its EPS of $1.19 beat analysts’ estimates for a fourth consecutive quarter and rose 24% YoY (year-over-year) from $0.96 in Q1 2018.
Exelon (EXC) stock rose more than 2% last week. It’s slated to report its quarterly earnings this week. Exelon stock is up almost 12% so far this year and trading at almost a decade high.
One of the smallest utilities, AES Corporation’s (AES) stock trended lower, down 1.5% during the week. It’s one of the top gainers among utilities with a 21% gain so far this year. Utility stocks seem to have slowed down a bit lately after hitting a multi-year high late last month. Quarterly earnings growth and geopolitical tensions could be some important drivers going forward.