In the latest trading session, Southern Co. (SO) closed at $60.92, marking a -0.98% move from the previous day. This move lagged the S&P 500's daily loss of 0.14%. Meanwhile, the Dow lost 0.11%, and the Nasdaq, a tech-heavy index, lost 0.1%.
Coming into today, shares of the power company had gained 2.55% in the past month. In that same time, the Utilities sector gained 1.05%, while the S&P 500 lost 0.91%.
Wall Street will be looking for positivity from SO as it approaches its next earnings report date. This is expected to be October 30, 2019. The company is expected to report EPS of $1.14, unchanged from the prior-year quarter. Our most recent consensus estimate is calling for quarterly revenue of $5.91 billion, down 4.12% from the year-ago period.
For the full year, our Zacks Consensus Estimates are projecting earnings of $3.04 per share and revenue of $21.77 billion, which would represent changes of -0.98% and -7.33%, respectively, from the prior year.
It is also important to note the recent changes to analyst estimates for SO. These revisions typically reflect the latest short-term business trends, which can change frequently. As such, positive estimate revisions reflect analyst optimism about the company's business and profitability.
Based on our research, we believe these estimate revisions are directly related to near-team stock moves. Investors can capitalize on this by using the Zacks Rank. This model considers these estimate changes and provides a simple, actionable rating system.
Ranging from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell), the Zacks Rank system has a proven, outside-audited track record of outperformance, with #1 stocks returning an average of +25% annually since 1988. Over the past month, the Zacks Consensus EPS estimate has moved 0.02% lower. SO is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #3 (Hold).
Valuation is also important, so investors should note that SO has a Forward P/E ratio of 20.22 right now. This represents a discount compared to its industry's average Forward P/E of 21.24.
Meanwhile, SO's PEG ratio is currently 4.49. This popular metric is similar to the widely-known P/E ratio, with the difference being that the PEG ratio also takes into account the company's expected earnings growth rate. The Utility - Electric Power was holding an average PEG ratio of 3.93 at yesterday's closing price.
The Utility - Electric Power industry is part of the Utilities sector. This group has a Zacks Industry Rank of 65, putting it in the top 26% of all 250+ industries.
The Zacks Industry Rank gauges the strength of our industry groups by measuring the average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks within the groups. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.
You can find more information on all of these metrics, and much more, on Zacks.com.
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