In the latest trading session, Southern Co. (SO - Free Report) closed at $52.12, marking a +0.68% move from the previous day. The stock outpaced the S&P 500's daily of 0%. Elsewhere, the Dow lost 0.05%, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 0.21%.
Heading into today, shares of the power company had gained 0.08% over the past month, lagging the Utilities sector's gain of 0.71% and the S&P 500's gain of 5.49% in that time.
SO will be looking to display strength as it nears its next earnings release, which is expected to be May 1, 2019. The company is expected to report EPS of $0.74, down 15.91% from the prior-year quarter. Our most recent consensus estimate is calling for quarterly revenue of $5.59 billion, down 12.31% from the year-ago period.
Looking at the full year, our Zacks Consensus Estimates suggest analysts are expecting earnings of $3.03 per share and revenue of $22.27 billion. These totals would mark changes of -1.3% and -5.22%, respectively, from last year.
Any recent changes to analyst estimates for SO should also be noted by investors. Recent revisions tend to reflect the latest near-term business trends. As a result, we can interpret positive estimate revisions as a good sign for the company's business outlook.
Based on our research, we believe these estimate revisions are directly related to near-team stock moves. 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.
The Zacks Rank system, which ranges from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell), has an impressive outside-audited track record of outperformance, with #1 stocks generating an average annual return of +25% since 1988. Over the past month, the Zacks Consensus EPS estimate remained stagnant. SO is currently a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
Digging into valuation, SO currently has a Forward P/E ratio of 17.09. For comparison, its industry has an average Forward P/E of 19.4, which means SO is trading at a discount to the group.
Meanwhile, SO's PEG ratio is currently 3.8. 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 3.52 at yesterday's closing price.
The Utility - Electric Power industry is part of the Utilities sector. This group has a Zacks Industry Rank of 91, putting it in the top 36% of all 250+ industries.
The Zacks Industry Rank includes is listed in order from best to worst in terms of the average Zacks Rank of the individual companies within each of these sectors. 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.