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Wednesday's Energy Stocks: SunPower dives 19%

Midweek trading saw a mixed performance from the energy equities, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed the 22,000 mark and hit a new high of 22,036.10.

The Dow closed up 0.24% at 22,016.24, and the S&P 500 added 0.05% to 2,477.57. The SNL Energy Index added 0.05% to 294.06.

SunPower Corp. plummeted 19.32% on more than three times the average volume to close at $9.19, following the company's decision to monetize its ownership interests in 8point3 Energy Partners LP and to not "actively seek a replacement" for First Solar Inc. as partner sponsor of the yieldco.

SunPower's president and CEO said the company has "received significant initial interest in the acquisition of [their] general partnership stake or in the sale of the entire partnership."

The company updated its guidance after its non-GAAP net loss for the second quarter widened to a loss of $49.3 million, or a loss of 35 cents per share, compared to a net loss of $14.2 million, or a loss of 10 cents per share, a year ago.

8point3 Energy Partners dipped 0.55% on below-average volume to finish at $14.56, while First Solar receded 2.05% in light trading to end at $48.63.

Among the several power companies that released second-quarter earnings, Southern Co. rose 2.58% in strong trading to close at $49.78, Avista Corp. declined 1.06% in active trading to $52.18, MDU Resources Group Inc. shed 3.34% on heavy volume to finish at $25.45, and NiSource Inc. added 1.64% in above-average trading to end the session at $26.67.

Southern reported net income of $728 million, or 73 cents per share, compared to $704 million, or 75 cents per share, a year ago.

Avista recorded net income attributable to shareholders of $21.8 million, or 34 cents per diluted share, compared to $27.3 million, or 43 cents per diluted share, in the corresponding quarter of 2016. Avista executives declined to give details on the company's pending merger with Hydro One Ltd. prior to their official filing of a proxy statement with the SEC in September.

MDU Resources posted earnings from continuing operations of $43.8 million, or 22 cents per share, down from $46.1 million, or 24 cents per share, in the same quarter in 2016.

NiSource booked $33.3 million in net operating earnings from continuing operations, or 10 cents per share, up from $26.6 million, or 8 cents per share, a year ago. The company remains on schedule with plans to invest $1.6 billion to $1.7 billion in its gas and electric utility infrastructure in 2017.

The SNL Merchant Generator Index lost 1.80% to close at 99.18.

Pioneer Natural Resources Co. dove 10.77% on about eight times the average volume to close at $145.68, after predicting production totals near the low end of its guidance, and revealed a $100 million cut in CapEx for the full year. For the quarter, Pioneer reported adjusted profit of $38 million, or 21 cents per share.

Pembina Pipeline Corp. retreated 1.05% in active trading to finish at $33.86, after posting second-quarter earnings of C$124 million, or 26 Canadian cents per share, an increase from C$113 million, or 25 Canadian cents per share, a year ago. Pembina executives said the pending merger with Veresen Inc. would fill "a big missing piece" in the form of export opportunities and gas services offerings.

ONEOK Inc. closed down 2.41% in light trading to finish at $55.36. The company expects strong rig counts in North Dakota's Williston Basin and the Midcontinent to drive natural gas liquids transportation growth during the second half of 2017. ONEOK reported $71.5 million of net income available to common shareholders for the second quarter, or 33 cents per share, compared to $85.9 million, or 40 cents per share, during the prior-year period.

In the coal sector, Westmoreland Resource Partners LP surged 22.33% in about 16 times the normal trading volume to close at $3.67, Hallador Energy Co. climbed 3.03% in light trading to close at $7.13, and Ramaco Resources Inc. finished up 1.08% on thin volume at $6.53. However, the SNL Coal Index shed 0.15% to end at 66.39.

NYMEX September natural gas futures were consolidating at midweek, ahead of the Thursday release of the latest storage data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Market prices and index values are current as of the time of publication and are subject to change.