Alliant Energy's profit slides on warm weather

Earnings drop by more than half as electricity and natural gas sales take a hit.

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Posted: Saturday, May 5, 2012 12:00 am

MADISON -- Alliant Energy Corp.'s first quarter earnings sank almost 53 percent, as warm weather hurt electricity and natural gas sales to the utility company's residential and commercial customers.

The Madison, Wis., company said Friday its net income fell to $34.9 million, or 32 cents per share, in the three months that ended March 31. That's down from $73.5 million, or 66 cents per share, a year ago.

Adjusted earnings, which exclude losses caused by increased tax obligations, were 46 cents per share.

Revenue fell 13 percent to $765.7 million from $877.2 million a year ago.

Alliant's utility subsidiaries provide service to about 1.4 million electric and natural gas customers in the Midwest. The company owns Interstate Power and Light Co., Wisconsin Power and Light Co. and Alliant Energy Resources LLC.

The company said a mild winter led to about a $22 million reduction in electric and gas margins in the quarter, or 12 cents per share. Higher electric sales to industrial customers partially offset this.

Alliant's results also included a loss of about 14 cents per share caused by greater tax obligations due to state tax apportionment changes. The company said the changes were necessary due to the planned sale of its renewable division, RMT.

Alliant also reported a net loss of 3 cents per share from the impairment of a Wisconsin wind site.

The company also affirmed its 2012 guidance. It expects earnings to range between $2.75 and $3.05 per share.

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