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If you’re interested in the high income and low volatility that the utility sector offers, this list may be a good starting point for ideas.

To get the following list we searched among utility stocks for those that beat the industry average on TTM gross, operating, and pretax margins. The screen produced 12, which are detailed below.



Do you think these stocks will continue to beat their industry average? Use this list as a starting-off point for your analysis.

List sorted by difference between TTM gross margin and industry average.

1. National Fuel Gas Co. (NYSE:NFG): Gas Utilities Industry. Market cap of $5.80B. TTM gross margin at 37.02% vs. industry average at 24.40%. TTM operating margin at 24.82% vs. industry average 15.23%. TTM pretax margin 23.20% vs. industry average 12.54% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 55.23% over the last year.

2. Cleco Corporation (NYSE:CNL):
Electric Utilities Industry. Market cap of $2.09B. TTM gross margin at 37.32% vs. industry average at 27.55%. TTM operating margin at 26.96% vs. industry average 19.12%. TTM pretax margin 18.52% vs. industry average 14.27% vs. industry average. The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 7.35% (equivalent to 9.6 days of average volume). The stock has gained 36.74% over the last year.

3. PPL Corporation (NYSE:PPL):
Electric Utilities Industry. Market cap of $16.02B. TTM gross margin at 36.25% vs. industry average at 27.55%. TTM operating margin at 28.65% vs. industry average 19.12%. TTM pretax margin 17.70% vs. industry average 14.27% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 16.89% over the last year.

4. Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE:DUK): Electric Utilities Industry. Market cap of $24.85B. TTM gross margin at 35.58% vs. industry average at 27.55%. TTM operating margin at 23.26% vs. industry average 19.12%. TTM pretax margin 15.93% vs. industry average 14.27% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 25.39% over the last year.

5. Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. (NYSE:PEG): Diversified Utilities Industry. Market cap of $16.92B. TTM gross margin at 33.34% vs. industry average at 26.34%. TTM operating margin at 24.93% vs. industry average 17.74%. TTM pretax margin 22.32% vs. industry average 14.85% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 16.84% over the last year.

6. Pinnacle West Capital Corporation (NYSE:PNW): Electric Utilities Industry. Market cap of $4.89B. TTM gross margin at 34.03% vs. industry average at 27.55%. TTM operating margin at 21.30% vs. industry average 19.12%. TTM pretax margin 14.99% vs. industry average 14.27% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 36.78% over the last year.

7. Exelon Corp. (NYSE:EXC):
Diversified Utilities Industry. Market cap of $27.66B. TTM gross margin at 33.70% vs. industry average at 27.55%. TTM operating margin at 23.88% vs. industry average 19.12%. TTM pretax margin 20.92% vs. industry average 14.27% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 15.39% over the last year.

8. Enersis S.A. (NYSE:ENI): Foreign Utilities Industry. Market cap of $13.91B. TTM gross margin at 32.93% vs. industry average at 27.55%. TTM operating margin at 26.38% vs. industry average 19.12%. TTM pretax margin 21.28% vs. industry average 14.27% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 19.26% over the last year.

9. AGL Resources Inc. (AGL): Gas Utilities Industry. Market cap of $3.15B. TTM gross margin at 29.23% vs. industry average at 24.40%. TTM operating margin at 22.06% vs. industry average 15.23%. TTM pretax margin 16.59% vs. industry average 12.54% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 18.65% over the last year.

10. IdaCorp, Inc. (NYSE:IDA):
Electric Utilities Industry. Market cap of $1.91B. TTM gross margin at 32.04% vs. industry average at 27.55%. TTM operating margin at 20.75% vs. industry average 19.12%. TTM pretax margin 15.36% vs. industry average 14.27% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 24.68% over the last year.

11. DPL Inc. (NYSE:DPL): Diversified Utilities Industry. Market cap of $3.52B. TTM gross margin at 32.03% vs. industry average at 27.55%. TTM operating margin at 24.91% vs. industry average 19.12%. TTM pretax margin 20.46% vs. industry average 14.27% vs. industry average. The stock has gained 28.46% over the last year.

12. Entergy Corporation (NYSE:ETR):
Electric Utilities Industry. Market cap of $11.87B. TTM gross margin at 31.40% vs. industry average at 27.55%. TTM operating margin at 20.03% vs. industry average 19.12%. TTM pretax margin 17.21% vs. industry average 14.27% vs. industry average. The stock has lost 4.65% over the last year.

*Profitability data sourced from Fidelity. All other data sourced from Finviz.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

Source: 12 Highly Profitable Utility Stocks for Your Watchlist