The Top 10 Global Electric Utilities

I selected the The Top 10 Global Electric Utilities from the “Platts Top 250 Global Energy Company Rankings” for 2009. Generally electric utility stocks offer solid dividend yields and have slow growth. Investors love them because of their yields and their monopolistic nature in most markets. Though highly regulated, electricity companies make decent profits year over year.

The Top 10 Global Electric Companies are listed below:


Source: Platts

Note: The companies in the list are selected based on “financial performance using four key metrics: asset worth, revenues, profits, and return on invested capital (ROIC) based on data from Standard & Poor’s Compustat”.

All the European electric utilities trade on the OTC markets in the US. Iberdrola and E.ON offer excellent yields. The two US companies that made it to this list are Exelon(EXC) and Florida-based Florida Power and Light (FPL). FPL’s average annual earnings growth is about 10%. Exelon serves millions of retail customers including those in Chicago,IL and Philadelphia, PA. It has an average annual earnings growth of about 25%.

On the strong performance of European Electric Utilities, Platts noted:

“Eight of the top ten electric utilities in Platts 2009 rankings were from Europe. Boosted by the European Commission’s 20-20-20 targets, which mandates that 20% of energy generation comes from renewable sources by 2020, Europe is leading the world in solar, wind and hydro power expansion. Spain, France and Germany are leading the rush to smart grid technology development in EMEA. France’s EDF Energy ranked first in the European leading companies table.

Also ranked number one in terms of assets, EDF has been on a buying spree; it took over UK nuclear provider British Energy in 2008 and Belgian electricity supplier SPE this year. Not to be outdone, Italy’s largest utility, the number two ranked Enel, bought a 25% share in Spain’s Endesa (ranked number 5) earlier this year. Only two US electric utilities made the top ten ranks of the Top 250; Exelon of Illinois, a nuclear and fossil fuel utility, and FPL of Florida, which is investing in large-scale solar plants. In the top 20 for all energy companies, there were only three utilities — RWE (a multi-utility) and electric utilities EDF and ENEL.”

Other U.S. electric utilities in the Platts list include: American Electric Power (AEP), Southern Company (SO), Edison International (EIX), Entergy (ETR), Duke Energy (DUK), PPL Corp (PPL), Progress Energy (PGN), Allegheny Energy Inc (AYE), Pepco Holdings Inc (POM) and Northeast Utilities (NU).

For the complete list of the Top 60 Global Electric Utilities which includes top companies in other countries such as Saudi Arabia, India, Japan, Brazil, Finland etc. click here.

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