The average utilities mutual fund has soared 28.4 percent the past 12 months, compared with a 6.5 percent gain for the S&P 500. The past three years, utilities funds have gained 48 percent — even in the face of rising energy prices. What’s driving the rally? Dividends. Standard & Poor’s electric utility index has a 3.5 percent dividend yield, compared with 2 percent for the S&P 500.
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