FirstEnergy Reports Second-Quarter 2003 Results

August 05, 2003 by Jeff Shepard

FirstEnergy Corp. (Akron, OH) reported that basic earnings per share of common stock on a non-GAAP basis for the second quarter of 2003 were $0.52, before a loss on discontinued operations and unusual charges. Including these items, the company reported a net loss of $57.9 million, or $0.20 per share. This compares with expected second-quarter 2002 restated net income of $216 million, or basic earnings of $0.74 per share ($0.73 diluted).

FirstEnergy's total revenues for the second quarter of 2003 were $2.9 billion, unchanged from the year-earlier quarter. Retail generation kilowatt-hour sales during the period rose 15.9% compared with the year-earlier quarter. Regulated kilowatt-hour distribution deliveries to customers decreased 2.8%, compared with the year-earlier quarter, due primarily to unusually mild weather. Regarding second-quarter earnings, the loss from discontinued operations reflects a non-cash charge of $67 million, or $0.23 per share.

As a result of lower-than-expected results for the quarter, FirstEnergy has updated its 2003 earnings guidance. Previously estimated at $3.35 to $3.55 per share on a non-GAAP basis, 2003 earnings are now expected to be in the range of $2.68 to $2.88 per share on a non-GAAP basis. Including these items, FirstEnergy's revised 2003 guidance would be $1.96 to $2.16 per share on a GAAP basis.