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What's Next for the Utilities

Published by Forbes on Tue, 10 Feb 2015

Monday's market decline was not too surprising after the rally stalled last Friday as even higher crude oil prices couldn't boost stocks higher. In last week's technical review Do Stocks Have Enough Juice to Breakout', I pointed out that while the majority of daily technical studies were still range bound, the weekly analysis did point higher.This is still the case and it is why a higher close this week will help resolve the market's outlook. Typically, this would mean that the market's correction should be over soon and the futures are showing nice gains in early trading.The Dow Transportation and Dow Utility Average were two of the biggest losers last week as they were down 1.03% and 0.96%, respectively. The utility stocks have been hit the hardest recently as the Sector Select Utilities (XLU) is down 6.6% since its yearend close.In polls of institutional money managers, this sector has been one of the least favorite sectors since 2013. It has had a couple of pretty good years as XLU was up 13.05% in 2013 and 28.73% last week.Looking back to the early 1930s, the Dow Utilities has a seasonal tendency to peak at the end of January and decline into May. Of course, with a further decline in price, the yields are getting even more attractive so is this correction a buying opportunity in the utilities
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