Are you looking for a wild ride or are you looking for consistent income? For a de-risked portfolio and solid dividends, utilities stocks are a time-tested favorite investment option.
Along with the dividends, utilities stocks are considered relatively safe because they provide power to homes and businesses. This is considered a necessity that never goes out of style.
It’s a sound policy to stick to the best companies in any sector. When it comes to utilities companies, five names are well-regarded and have a long history:
- Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK)
- Southern (NYSE:SO)
- Dominion Energy (NYSE:D)
- Consolidated Edison (NYSE:ED)
- Excelon (NASDAQ:EXC)
Feel free to explore these utilities stocks and see if they deserve a place among your low-volatility holdings.
Utilities Stocks to Buy: Duke Energy (DUK)
Like just about every company in the United States, Duke Energy is dealing with the Covid-19 crisis. This particular company seems to be taking the situation in stride, however.
Consider Duke’s first-quarter net income, which came out to $899 million. That’s just about exactly in line with the same quarter of the previous year, when Duke’s net income was $900 million. Meanwhile, this year’s first-quarter revenue totaled $5.95 billion, which is not too far below the $6.16 billion reported in the first quarter of the prior year.
So, while there is some pressure being felt during the pandemic, it’s not too severe. For the time being, DUK stockholders can ride out the crisis with a decent 4.54% forward annual dividend yield.
“Critical infrastructure businesses like ours never take a day off,” observed Thomas A. Fanning, the president and CEO of utilities giant Southern. Fanning’s 100% right about that as Southern is an essential utilities provider for around 8 million customers.
Southern remains in good fiscal health, as well. For 2020’s first quarter, the company posted adjusted earnings per share of 78 cents. That’s an eight-cent year-over-year increase as well as 6 cents greater than the company’s estimate.
SO stock is a safe bet since it has such a massive presence and is crucial to people’s standard of living. It’s also a dividend achiever with a forward annual yield of 4.78%. All in all, this pick deserves to be on anyone’s top utilities stocks list.
Dominion Energy (D)
If you said that D stock is recession-proof, you’d by exaggerating but only slightly. The shares have held up fairly well during the novel coronavirus crisis. Besides, the 4.77% forward annual dividend yield is a strong incentive to hold the stock.
Fiscally, Dominion Energy has held up reasonably well despite the pandemic. For the first quarter of this year, Dominion reported total revenues of $4.5 billion. That’s actually a marked improvement over the revenues of $3.9 billion Dominion generated in the year-ago quarter.
With over 7 million customers across 20 U.S. states relying on Dominion for their energy needs, this company’s a mainstay in the utilities sector and D stock is a highly reliable income generator.
Consolidated Edison (ED)
Like to invest in companies that have been around for a while? If so, take a look at Consolidated Edison, which was founded way back in 1884. If you happen to reside in New York or New Jersey, there’s a fair chance that your electricity service is provided by this esteemed company.
Has “Con Ed” been able to weather the Covid storm? The answer would be yes as the company’s adjusted earnings for the first quarter totaled $451 million. That’s $1.35 per share and it beats the $448 million, or $1.39 per share, generated during the same quarter of last year.
Plus, ED stock features a trailing 12-month price-to-earnings ratio of 18.15 and a forward annual dividend yield of 4.32%. Those are nice stats and this stock should perform well even in these challenging times.
This one’s a little bit different from the other utilities-sector stocks on this list. Excelon is a relative newcomer, having been incorporated in 1999. Plus, EXC stock is the only name on this list that’s traded on the Nasdaq.
So, it could be argued that Excelon is a more “modern” utilities company. Its true strength, however, is that it’s diversified with fossil, nuclear, hydroelectric, wind and solar segments.
With 87 cents per share in operating earnings for 2020’s first quarter, Excelon remains on par with its results from the same quarter of last year. Additionally, a trailing 12-month price-to-earnings ratio of 13.79 and a forward annual dividend yield of 4.17% indicate a compelling value with EXC stock.
David Moadel has provided compelling content – and crossed the occasional line – on behalf of Crush the Street, Market Realist, TalkMarkets, Finom Group, Benzinga, and (of course) InvestorPlace.com. He also serves as the chief analyst and market researcher for Portfolio Wealth Global and hosts the popular financial YouTube channel Looking at the Markets. As of this writing, David Moadel did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.