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Ameren (AEE) Q1 Earnings Beat Estimates, Revenues Rise Y/Y

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Ameren Corporation’s (AEE - Free Report) first-quarter 2022 earnings of 97 cents per share surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 96 cents by 1%. Also, the reported figure improved by 6.6% from the 91 cents reported in the year-ago quarter.

The year-over-year bottom-line improvement can be primarily attributed to increased infrastructure investments across all the company’s business segments.

Total Revenues

Total revenues came in at $1,879 million in the reported quarter, which improved by 20% year over year due to higher electric and natural gas revenues. Revenues also beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1,620 million by 16%.

Ameren Corporation Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Ameren Corporation Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Ameren Corporation price-consensus-eps-surprise-chart | Ameren Corporation Quote

Highlights of the Release

Ameren’s total electricity sales volumes rose 12.2% to 19,806 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) compared with 17,655 million kWh witnessed in the year-ago quarter. Gas volumes rose 3.9% to 80 million dekatherms.

Total operating expenses were $1,548 million, up 23.8% year over year.

The company’s interest expenses in the first quarter were $104 million compared with the prior-year quarter’s $100 million.

Segment Results

The Ameren Missouri segment reported earnings of $50 million in the first quarter of 2022 compared with the $47 million recorded in the year-ago period. The year-over-year improvement can be attributed to earnings from infrastructure investments, including wind generation and higher electric retail sales.

The Ameren Illinois Electric Distribution segment reported earnings of $49 million in the first quarter of 2022 compared with the $46 million registered in the year-ago period. The year-over-year improvement was driven by increased earnings from infrastructure investments and a higher allowed return on equity due to a higher average 30-year U.S. Treasurybond yield in 2022 compared with 2021.

The Ameren Illinois Natural Gas segment generated earnings of $80 million in the first quarter of 2022 compared with $75 million in the year-ago period. This year-over-year improvement was led by higher delivery services rates effective late January 2021, which incorporated increased infrastructure investments.

The Ameren Transmission segment reported earnings of $58 million in the first quarter of 2022 compared with $47 million in the prior year. The improvement can be attributed to higher earnings from infrastructure investments.

Financial Condition

Ameren reported cash and cash equivalents of $7 million as of Mar 31, 2022 compared with the $8 million registered at the 2021-end.

As of Mar 31, 2022, the long-term debt totaled $12,563 million compared with $12,562 million as of Dec 31, 2021.

During the first quarter, the cash flow from operating activities amounted to $388 million against the cash outflow of $35 million in the prior-year period.

Guidance

Ameren reaffirmed its 2022 guidance. AEE currently expects to generate earnings per share (EPS) in the range of $3.95-$4.15. Currently, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2022 earnings is pegged at $4.07 per share, higher than the midpoint of the guidance range.

Zacks Rank

Ameren currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Other Utility Releases

FirstEnergy Corporation (FE - Free Report) delivered first-quarter 2022 operating EPS of 60 cents, which missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 62 cents by 3.2%. The bottom line declined by 13% from the year-ago earnings of 69 cents per share.

FirstEnergygenerated operating revenues of $2,991 million in the first quarter, which surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2,782 million by 7.5%. FE’s top line improved by 8.7% from $2,752 million in the year-ago quarter.

NextEra Energy (NEE - Free Report) reported first-quarter 2022 adjusted earnings of 74 cents per share, which beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 69 cents by 7.3%. The bottom line was also up 10.5% from the prior-year quarter.

NextEra Energy’soperating revenues were $2,890 million, which lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $5,178 million by 44.2%. NEE’s top line also decreased by 22.4% year over year.

Entergy Corporation (ETR - Free Report) reported first-quarter 2022 adjusted earnings of $1.32 per share, which missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.38 by 4.3%. The reported figure also declined by 10.2% from $1.47 per share in the year-ago quarter.

Entergy’s first-quarter revenues of $2.88 billion exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.75 billion by 4.8%. As of Mar 31, 2022, ETR had cash and cash equivalents of $701.6 million compared with $442.6 million as of Dec 31, 2021.