Public utilities suffer along with everyone else Monday on Wall Street

Financial Markets

Investor-owned utility companies, with one notable exception, were not spared on Wall Street’s day of bloodletting Monday.

Of the nation’s 10 biggest IOUs, Monday’s bear attack was a truly a case of the bigger they are, the harder they fall. Three of the biggest—Duke Energy, NextEra Energy and Dominion—lost 4 percent or more of their stock value with Duke leading the losses at $4.27 per share (or nearly 6 percent).

Overall, the Dow Jones Industrial gave away 588 points on worries about the Chinese economy and other fears. Since midway last week the index of 30 industrial stocks has lost nearly 10 percent of its collective value.

Electric utilities are not proving to be counter-cyclical, as all of the top IOUs suffered on the proverbial trading floor Monday. Duke (DUK) led the way with a 5.6 percent daily loss, with Entergy Corp. (ETR) not far behind at 5 percent.

Not even Southern Co.’s (SO) announcement of its $12 billion plan to acquire natural gas utility AGL Resources Inc. (GAS) could soften its Monday fall. Southern’s stock fell $2.22, or 4.85 percent, from Friday’s close at $45.80.

AGL, surely due to its sudden status as the apple of Southern’s eye, was the outlier among utility stocks by gaining $13.55 from Friday’s $47.86 share close.

Here’s a rundown of Monday’s losses among the biggest public utilities.

Company name (ticker symbol); Friday’s closing price; Monday’s close; Loss (percentage)

1.      Duke Energy (DUK); $76.71; $72.44; down $4.27 (5.6 percent)

2.      Entergy Corp ETR); $69.39; $65.90; down $3.49 (5 percent)

3.      Southern Co (SO); $45.80; $43.58; down $2.22 (4.85 percent)

4.      PPL Corp. (PPL); $32.90; $31.37; down $1.53 (4.65 percent)

5.      American Electric Power (AEP); $57.29; $54.83; down $2.46 (4.3 percent)

6.      Xcel Energy (XEL); $35.56; $34.10; down $1.46 (4.1 percent)

7.      Consolidated Edison (ED); $66.06; $63.35; down $2.71 (4.1 percent)

8.      Dominion Resources (D); $75.40; $72.36; down $3.04 (4 percent)

9.      NextEra Energy (NEE); $106.96; $103.04; down $3.92 (3.7 percent)

10.  Exelon Corp. (EXC); $33.00; $32.64; down $0.36 (1.1 percent)

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