Performance of SO over the last year very disturbing. All utilities weak
but SO among weakest. Note that SO has paid a dividend of about
4.4 to 4.6% putting it in the middle of utility yields for many years.
Now because of the fall in the stock price SO pays 5% more than
nearly all other utilities except for two very troubled utilities, First
Energy and Entergy. The only other utility that paid more was
Excelon until it cut its dividend. Problem seems to be cost
overruns at Kemper and especially Vogtle with no end in sight.
There is also serious doubt that SO will be allowed to recoup
these costs by raising rates. The high yield investors are
demanding does not seem to bode well. Hopefully, this isn't
another Exelon in the making.