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Tickers in this Article: CIG, CPNO, MGEE, NFG, EPB, OKE, TEG
The market is having a bad day so far. The Nasdaq has fallen 2%; the S&P 500 is down 1.9%; and the Dow has decreased 1.4%. The utilities sector is a category of stocks for utilities such as gas and power. It contains companies such as electric, gas and water firms and integrated providers. Because utilities require significant infrastructure, these firms often carry large amounts of debt. With a high debt load, utilities companies become sensitive to changes in the interest rate. As interest rates rise or drop, the debt payments will increase or decrease. The utilities sector performs best when interest rates are falling or remain low.

The Utilities sector (XLU) is down 1.7%, outperforming the market overall. Currently, the biggest movers in the sector are:
CompanyMarket CapPercentage Change
Companhia Energetica Minas Gerais (NYSE:CIG)$10.52 billion+4.5%
Copano Energy (Nasdaq:CPNO)$2.48 billion-2.7%
MGE Energy (Nasdaq:MGEE)$1.21 billion-2.2%
National Fuel (NYSE:NFG)$4.43 billion-2%
El Paso Pipeline Partners (NYSE:EPB)$8.25 billion-2%
Oneok (NYSE:OKE)$8.97 billion-1.9%
Integrys Energy (NYSE:TEG)$4.24 billion-1.8%
Forex Broker Summary: Forex Capital Markets (FXCM)

Companhia Energetica Minas Gerais (NYSE:CIG) has risen 4.5% to hit a current price of $12.89 per share. At 3.4 million shares, the company's volume so far today is 1.3 times the current daily average.

Copano Energy (Nasdaq:CPNO) has decreased to $30.58 per share, a 2.7% fall. This morning, the company is trading a volume of 136,104 shares.

MGE Energy (Nasdaq:MGEE) is down 2.2% to reach $51.17 per share. So far today, the company's volume is 99,257 shares, 2.1 times the current three-month average.

National Fuel (NYSE:NFG) is currently trading at a share price of $52.09, a 2% decline. So far today, the company's volume is 300,586 shares.

El Paso Pipeline Partners (NYSE:EPB) is trading at $37.47 per share, down 2%. So far today, the company's volume is 192,869 shares, 0.3 times the average daily volume.

Falling 1.9%, Oneok (NYSE:OKE) is currently at a share price of $43.01. The company's volume for the day so far is 880,084 shares.

At $53.17, Integrys Energy (NYSE:TEG) has slipped 1.8%. At 300,770 shares, the company's volume so far today is consistent with its average over the last three months.

The Bottom Line The nature of the market is such that stocks will have good days and bad days. Daily stock performance should be weighed against historical performance and put in context of the market overall. Keep in mind that all these ratios should be compared against historical numbers and industry information in order to get a more complete picture.

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