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PNW vs. UTL: Which Stock Is the Better Value Option?

Zacks

Investors interested in Utility – Electric Power stocks are likely familiar with Pinnacle West (PNW) and Unitil (UTL). But which of these two stocks presents investors with the better value opportunity right now? Let’s take a closer look.

The best way to find great value stocks is to pair a strong Zacks Rank with an impressive grade in the Value category of our Style Scores system. The proven Zacks Rank puts an emphasis on earnings estimates and estimate revisions, while our Style Scores work to identify stocks with specific traits.

Pinnacle West has a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy), while Unitil has a Zacks Rank of #3 (Hold) right now. Investors should feel comfortable knowing that PNW likely has seen a stronger improvement to its earnings outlook than UTL has recently. But this is only part of the picture for value investors.

Value investors also tend to look at a number of traditional, tried-and-true figures to help them find stocks that they believe are undervalued at their current share price levels.


Our Value category grades stocks based on a number of key metrics, including the tried-and-true P/E ratio, the P/S ratio, earnings yield, and cash flow per share, as well as a variety of other fundamentals that value investors frequently use.

PNW currently has a forward P/E ratio of 17.47, while UTL has a forward P/E of 21.19. We also note that PNW has a PEG ratio of 3.90. This popular figure is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but the PEG ratio also considers a company’s expected EPS growth rate. UTL currently has a PEG ratio of 5.73.

Another notable valuation metric for PNW is its P/B ratio of 1.73. Investors use the P/B ratio to look at a stock’s market value versus its book value, which is defined as total assets minus total liabilities. By comparison, UTL has a P/B of 2.07.

These are just a few of the metrics contributing to PNW’s Value grade of B and UTL’s Value grade of C.

PNW sticks out from UTL in both our Zacks Rank and Style Scores models, so value investors will likely feel that PNW is the better option right now.


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