Utilities Slightly Higher on Cyclical Bias -- Utilities Roundup

Shares of power-plant operators rose, but not by as much as the broad market, as traders rotated out of defensive areas into economically cyclical sectors in the wake of the French presidential election.

One brokerage said the reasons for the shift from risk-sensitive cyclical stocks to defensive stocks recently may have little to do with the French election. "Bond yields have more recently declined while defensive equity sectors have outperformed," said Bob Doll, investment strategist at money manager Nuveen Investments. "This has sparked concern that we may be entering a period of weaker global economic growth and possibly an end to the years-long equity bull market. We doubt this is the case. More likely, we have been experiencing a consolidation of overbought conditions in equities while economic data has softened slightly."

Hong Kong conglomerate Chow Tai Fook Enterprises won Australian government approval for its takeover of gas-and-electricity provider Alinta Energy.

Rob Curran, rob.curran@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 24, 2017 18:12 ET (22:12 GMT)