Ameren Corporation (AEE - Free Report) reported second-quarter 2018 earnings of 97 cents per share from continuing operations, which surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 79 cents by 22.8%. The bottom line also increased 22.8% year over year, primarily driven by higher Ameren Missouri electric retail sales.
Also, infrastructure investments made at Ameren Transmission, Ameren Illinois Electric Distribution and Ameren Illinois Natural Gas contributed to bottom-line growth.
Total revenues came in at $1,563 million, which increased 1.7% year over year owing to higher electric and natural gas sales volumes.
Highlights of the Release
Ameren’s total electricity sales volumes increased 2% to 19,495 million kilowatt hours (kWh) compared with 19,121 million kWh in the prior-year quarter. Gas volumes improved 15.6% to 37 million dekatherms.
Total operating expenses summed $1,178 million, up 2.4% year over year.
Interest expenses were $100 million compared with $99 million in the year-ago quarter.
Ameren reported cash and cash equivalents of $29 million as of Jun 30, 2018 compared with $10 million at 2017-end.
As of Jun 30, 2018, long-term debt totaled $7,613 million compared with $7,094 million as of Dec 31, 2017.
As of Jun 30, 2018, cash from operating activities amounted to $820 million compared with $863 million in the prior-year period.
Ameren has raised its 2018 earnings per share guidance to the range of $3.15-$3.35 from $2.95-$3.15 projected earlier.
Ameren carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Recent Utility Releases
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Entergy Corporation’s (ETR - Free Report) second-quarter 2018 adjusted earnings came in at $1.79 per share, which exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.26 by 42.1%.
NextEra Energy, Inc. (NEE - Free Report) reported second-quarter 2018 adjusted earnings of $2.11 per share, which outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.07 by 1.93%. The bottom line was also up 13.4% on a year-over-year basis.
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