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Is American Electric Power (AEP) Outperforming Other Utilities Stocks This Year?

Investors interested in Utilities stocks should always be looking to find the best-performing companies in the group. American Electric Power (AEP) is a stock that can certainly grab the attention of many investors, but do its recent returns compare favorably to the sector as a whole? By taking a look at the stock's year-to-date performance in comparison to its Utilities peers, we might be able to answer that question.

American Electric Power is a member of our Utilities group, which includes 108 different companies and currently sits at #12 in the Zacks Sector Rank. The Zacks Sector Rank considers 16 different groups, measuring the average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks within the sector to gauge the strength of each group.

The Zacks Rank emphasizes earnings estimates and estimate revisions to find stocks with improving earnings outlooks. This system has a long record of success, and these stocks tend to be on track to beat the market over the next one to three months. American Electric Power is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy).

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for AEP's full-year earnings has moved 0.8% higher within the past quarter. This is a sign of improving analyst sentiment and a positive earnings outlook trend.

Our latest available data shows that AEP has returned about 13% since the start of the calendar year. Meanwhile, the Utilities sector has returned an average of 2.5% on a year-to-date basis. This shows that American Electric Power is outperforming its peers so far this year.

One other Utilities stock that has outperformed the sector so far this year is Telecom Argentina (TEO). The stock is up 3.3% year-to-date.

The consensus estimate for Telecom Argentina's current year EPS has increased 211.3% over the past three months. The stock currently has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Looking more specifically, American Electric Power belongs to the Utility - Electric Power industry, a group that includes 61 individual stocks and currently sits at #165 in the Zacks Industry Rank. On average, stocks in this group have gained 2.1% this year, meaning that AEP is performing better in terms of year-to-date returns.


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