The 5 Best Stocks From This Bear Market

By Aryeh Katz | July 08, 2010 AAA

Over the last 13 weeks the broad market, as represented by the SPDR S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY), is down by more than 14%. Despite this, there are a handful of companies that have not only outperformed the index but have gained in value and are still posting some very impressive fundamentals.
Below, we highlight just a few of them: companies with an impressive price/earnings ratios and dividend yields that are also holding strong against a falling market. Is it any surprise that they also hail from the traditional, safe-haven utilities sector?

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Serving Up Electrifying Returns
First up is Public Service Enterprise Group (NYSE:PEG), a company that generates and sells electricity and markets natural gas to customers up and down the Atlantic seaboard. The company's shares have climbed 6% since April 1, and still offer a handsome 4.3% dividend yield. Against the utilities sector as a whole, the shares have shown stalwart qualities, besting the Utilities SPDR ETF (NYSE:XLU), which lost more than 5% over the same period.


In its most recent earnings report, PEG posted EPS numbers that handily beat Wall Street estimates. Where the street had been expecting net income of 65 cents a share, management delivered 84 cents.

Public Service shares trade with a price/earnings ratio of 9.7, have a market cap in excess of $15 billion and are mostly institutionally owned (61.4%).

Another Mid-Atlantic Winner
Chesapeake Utilities Corporation (NYSE:CPK) shares pay an annual 4.2% dividend and trade with a P/E of 13.35. Over the last three months, the stock is up over 4.5%. Over the last decade, Chesapeake investors have gained an average of 7.5% annually - not including the dividend.

CPK's business is focused on three states, Maryland, Delaware and Florida. This week, shareholders will benefit from a 5% rise in the annual dividend.

CPK has a relatively small market cap of just $307 million.

CPFL Energia S.A. (NYSE:CPL) is a Brazil-based generator and marketer of electricity. The company's shares have risen almost 14% since April 1, and still yield a healthy 6.66% annually. The shares trade with a multiple of 14.3 times last year's earnings.

CPL has a market cap of $11 billion.

The Wrap
In times of danger, investors often turn to utilities for the relative safety they offer. But to buck a 15% correction in the market and rise in value is something special, and a feat only the best companies can hope to achieve. (Learn more about the sector, see Trust In Utilities.)

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