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Southern Co. (SO) closed the most recent trading day at $72.14, moving -1.03% from the previous trading session. This change was narrower than the S&P 500's daily loss of 2.91%. Meanwhile, the Dow lost 2.73%, and the Nasdaq, a tech-heavy index, lost 0.25%.
Heading into today, shares of the power company had lost 1.61% over the past month, lagging the Utilities sector's gain of 0.91% and the S&P 500's gain of 0.84% in that time.
Investors will be hoping for strength from Southern Co. as it approaches its next earnings release. On that day, Southern Co. is projected to report earnings of $0.86 per share, which would represent year-over-year growth of 2.38%. Our most recent consensus estimate is calling for quarterly revenue of $5.62 billion, up 8.09% from the year-ago period.
For the full year, our Zacks Consensus Estimates are projecting earnings of $3.56 per share and revenue of $24.81 billion, which would represent changes of +4.4% and +7.33%, respectively, from the prior year.
Investors should also note any recent changes to analyst estimates for Southern Co.These revisions typically reflect the latest short-term business trends, which can change frequently. As a result, we can interpret positive estimate revisions as a good sign for the company's business outlook.
Our research shows that these estimate changes are directly correlated with near-term stock prices. To benefit from this, we have developed the Zacks Rank, a proprietary model which takes these estimate changes into account and provides an 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. The Zacks Consensus EPS estimate has moved 0.05% lower within the past month. Southern Co. currently has a Zacks Rank of #3 (Hold).
Valuation is also important, so investors should note that Southern Co. has a Forward P/E ratio of 20.47 right now. This represents a premium compared to its industry's average Forward P/E of 19.27.
Meanwhile, SO's PEG ratio is currently 5.12. 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. Utility - Electric Power stocks are, on average, holding a PEG ratio of 3.32 based on yesterday's closing prices.
The Utility - Electric Power industry is part of the Utilities sector. This group has a Zacks Industry Rank of 149, putting it in the bottom 42% 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.
Be sure to follow all of these stock-moving metrics, and many more, on Zacks.com.