MILWAUKEE, May 1, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — WEC Energy Group (NYSE: WEC) recorded net income of $390.1 million, or $1.23 per share, for the first quarter of 2018 – up from $356.6 million, or $1.12 per share, for the first quarter of 2017.
Consolidated revenues totaled $2.3 billion for the first quarter of 2018, level with last year’s first quarter.
“The solid results we posted for the opening quarter of 2018 were driven by stronger than expected demand for both natural gas and electricity,” said Gale Klappa, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Colder winter temperatures, a strengthening economy, and efficiency gains across our system were all positive factors that lifted our earnings above year ago levels,” he added.
Natural gas deliveries in Wisconsin, excluding gas used for power generation, rose by 11.2 percent in the first quarter of 2018, compared to the first quarter of 2017. On a weather-normal basis, natural gas deliveries grew by 4.9 percent.
Retail deliveries of electricity by the Wisconsin and Michigan utilities – excluding the iron ore mine in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula – increased by 1.6 percent, compared to the first quarter of 2017.
Residential electricity use rose by 4.6 percent. In the large commercial and industrial segment – excluding the iron ore mine – electricity use was 0.7 percent higher. Electricity consumption by small commercial and industrial customers was up 0.1 percent from the year ago quarter.
Overall, on a weather-normal basis, retail deliveries of electricity – excluding the iron ore mine – were even with last year’s first quarter.
At the end of March, the WEC Energy Group utilities were serving approximately 9,000 more electric and 27,000 more natural gas customers than at the same time a year ago.
The company is reaffirming its earnings guidance of $3.26 to $3.30 per share, with an expectation of reaching the top end of the range, assuming normal weather for the remainder of the year.
Earnings per share listed in this news release are on a fully diluted basis.
A conference call is scheduled for 1 p.m. Central time on Tuesday, May 1. The call will review 2018 first-quarter earnings and the company’s outlook for the future.
All interested parties, including stockholders, news media and the general public, are invited to listen. Access the call at 844-840-1623 up to 15 minutes before it begins. The number for international callers is 631-625-3204. The conference ID is 6377454.
Conference call access also is available at wecenergygroup.com. Select ‘First Quarter Earnings Release and Conference Call’ and then select ‘Webcast.’ In conjunction with this earnings announcement, WEC Energy Group will post on its website a package of detailed financial information on its first-quarter performance. The materials will be available at 6:30 a.m. Central time on Tuesday, May 1.
A replay will be available on the website and by phone approximately two hours after the call. The phone replay will remain accessible through May 14, 2018. Domestic callers should dial 855-859-2056. International callers should dial 404-537-3406. The replay conference ID is 6377454.
WEC Energy Group (NYSE: WEC), based in Milwaukee, is one of the nation’s premier energy companies, serving 4.5 million customers in Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan and Minnesota.
The company’s principal utilities are We Energies, Wisconsin Public Service, Peoples Gas, North Shore Gas, Michigan Gas Utilities, Minnesota Energy Resources and Upper Michigan Energy Resources. The company’s other major subsidiary, We Power, designs, builds and owns electric generating plants.
WEC Energy Group (wecenergygroup.com), is a Fortune 500 company and a component of the S&P 500. The company has approximately 50,000 stockholders of record, 8,000 employees, and more than $31 billion of assets.
Certain statements contained in this press release are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. These statements are based upon management’s current expectations and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause our actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in the statements. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these statements. Forward-looking statements include, among other things, statements concerning management’s expectations and projections regarding earnings and future results. In some cases, forward-looking statements may be identified by reference to a future period or periods or by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “anticipates,” “believes,” “estimates,” “expects,” “forecasts,” “guidance,” “intends,” “may,” “objectives,” “plans” “possible,” “potential,” “projects,” “should,” “targets,” “will” or similar terms or variations of these terms.
Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in any forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to: general economic conditions, including business and competitive conditions in the company’s service territories; timing, resolution and impact of rate cases and other regulatory decisions; the company’s ability to continue to successfully integrate the operations of its subsidiaries; availability of the company’s generating facilities and/or distribution systems; unanticipated changes in fuel and purchased power costs; key personnel changes; varying weather conditions; continued industry consolidation; continued adoption of distributed generation by the company’s customers; energy conservation efforts; cyber-security threats and data security breaches; construction risks; equity and bond market fluctuations; changes in the company’s and its subsidiaries’ ability to access the capital markets; the impact of tax reform and any other legislative and regulatory changes, including changes to environmental standards; political developments; current and future litigation and regulatory investigations; changes in accounting standards; the financial performance of the American Transmission Company; goodwill and its possible impairment; and other factors described under the heading “Factors Affecting Results, Liquidity and Capital Resources” in Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations and under the headings “Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Information” and “Risk Factors” contained in the company’s Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2017 and in subsequent reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company expressly disclaims any obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking information.
SOURCE WEC Energy Group
CONTACT: Cathy Schulze (news media), 414-221-4444, [email protected], Beth Straka (investment community), 414-221-4639, [email protected]