WEC Energy Group WEC delivered fourth-quarter 2019 adjusted earnings per share of 77 cents, which beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 72 cents by 6.94%. The bottom line increased from the year-ago quarter’s tally of 65 cents by 18.5%. In 2019, the company generated earnings of $3.58 per share compared with adjusted earnings of $3.34 per share in 2018. Revenues Total revenues amounted to $1,947.5 million, which missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2,113 million by 7.83%. The reported figure declined from $2,076.8 million in the year-ago quarter. The company generated $7,523.1 million revenues in 2019, down 2.03% from $7,679.5 million in 2018.
Highlights of the Release Residential use of electricity in 2019 fell 2.5% year over year. Electricity consumption by small commercial and industrial customers declined 2.5% year on year. Electricity used by large commercial and industrial customers, excluding iron ore mines, dropped 3.5% on a year-over-year basis. On a weather-normal basis, retail deliveries of electricity, excluding the iron ore mine, inched down 1.7%. Natural gas deliveries in Wisconsin, excluding gas used for power generation, moved up 2.6% during 2019. On a weather-normal basis, natural gas deliveries improved 1.8%. At the end of 2019, the company had an additional 10,000 electric and 14,000 natural gas customers compared with the year-ago quarter’s level. Financial Position As of Dec 31, 2019, WEC Energy had cash and cash equivalents of $37.5 million compared with $84.5 million as of Dec 31, 2018. As of Dec 31, 2019, the company had long-term debt of $11.2 billion, up almost 12.2% from 2018-end level. The company’s net cash provided by operating activities at the end of 2019 was $2.3 billion compared with $2.4 billion in the year-ago period. Capital expenditure at the end of 2019 was $2.3 billion, up from $2.1 billion a year ago. Guidance The company reaffirmed 2020 earnings per share guidance in the range of $3.71-$3.75. The projection is in line with its long-term objective of achieving earnings growth rate of 5-7% on an annual basis. The midpoint of the current guidance is $3.73, which is lower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3.74. Zacks Rank WEC Energy has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here. Other Utility Releases Xcel Energy XEL posted fourth-quarter 2019 operating earnings of 56 cents per share, which beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 53 cents by 5.6%. NextEra Energy ( NEE Quick Quote NEE - Free Report) reported fourth-quarter 2019 adjusted earnings of $1.44 per share, which lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.54 by 6.5%. CMS Energy Corporation CMS reported fourth-quarter 2019 adjusted earnings of 68 cents, which missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 69 cents. Free: Zacks’ Single Best Stock Set to Double Today you are invited to download our latest Special Report that reveals 5 stocks with the most potential to gain +100% or more in 2020. From those 5, Zacks Director of Research, Sheraz Mian hand-picks one to have the most explosive upside of all. This pioneering tech ticker had soared to all-time highs and then subsided to a price that is irresistible. Now a pending acquisition could super-charge the company’s drive past competitors in the development of true Artificial Intelligence. The earlier you get in to this stock, the greater your potential gain. See 5 Stocks Set to Double>>