Southern Co. (SO) closed at $61.15 in the latest trading session, marking a -1.18% move from the prior day. This move was narrower than the S&P 500's daily loss of 1.79%. Elsewhere, the Dow lost 1.86%, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 1.56%.
Coming into today, shares of the power company had gained 3.53% in the past month. In that same time, the Utilities sector gained 2.69%, while the S&P 500 gained 0.72%.
Investors will be hoping for strength from SO as it approaches its next earnings release. In that report, analysts expect SO to post earnings of $1.14 per share. This would mark no growth from the prior-year quarter. Meanwhile, our latest consensus estimate is calling for revenue of $5.91 billion, down 4.12% from the prior-year quarter.
SO's full-year Zacks Consensus Estimates are calling for earnings of $3.04 per share and revenue of $22.12 billion. These results would represent year-over-year changes of -0.98% and -5.86%, respectively.
Investors might also notice recent changes to analyst estimates for SO. These revisions help to show the ever-changing nature of near-term business trends. As a result, we can interpret positive estimate revisions as a good sign for the company's business outlook.
Research indicates that these estimate revisions are directly correlated with near-term share price momentum. 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. Within the past 30 days, our consensus EPS projection has moved 0.51% higher. SO is holding a Zacks Rank of #3 (Hold) right now.
Valuation is also important, so investors should note that SO has a Forward P/E ratio of 20.33 right now. For comparison, its industry has an average Forward P/E of 21.66, which means SO is trading at a discount to the group.
Meanwhile, SO's PEG ratio is currently 4.52. The PEG ratio is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but this metric also takes the company's expected earnings growth rate into account. The Utility - Electric Power industry currently had an average PEG ratio of 3.9 as of yesterday's close.
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.
Make sure to utilize Zacks. Com to follow all of these stock-moving metrics, and more, in the coming trading sessions.
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