TECO Energy expects to exceed first quarter earnings forecasts
TAMPA, March 28, 2001
TECO Energy (NYSE: TE) today announced that it expects to exceed consensus earnings forecasts for the first quarter. The First Call first quarter consensus earnings forecast is $.46 per share, 7 percent higher than the $.42 earnings per share recorded in the first quarter last year. TECO Energy now expects first quarter earnings to exceed $.50 per share, more than 15 percent higher than the same period last year.
In 2001, the increased first quarter earnings are being driven by higher-than-expected utilization at TECO Power Services’ Commonwealth Chesapeake Station, which was brought on line in the second half of 2000, stronger gas prices at TECO Coalbed Methane, good winter weather for sales at both Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas, and strong performance at TECO Coal.
Full year 2001 earnings growth is now expected to exceed the 10 percent previously forecast. As a result of the addition of the Frontera Power Station at TECO Power Services, improved metallurgical coal prices at TECO Coal, higher gas prices at TECO Coalbed Methane, and TECO Power Services' strong first quarter results, TECO Energy now expects earnings growth of 15 percent in 2001.
Chairman and CEO Bob Fagan said "We are hitting on all cylinders now and producing very strong results. The expansion of our domestic independent power generation operations is producing better results, sooner than we anticipated, and improved prices for both coal and gas production are combining to give us a very strong first quarter. We see that we have the pieces in place to produce outstanding results in 2001."
TECO Energy plans to report final first quarter results on Wednesday April 18, 2001 and conduct a conference call and webcast to discuss the quarter and the outlook for the remainder of the year on Thursday, April 19, 2001 at 9:00 A.M. Eastern time.
TECO Energy (NYSE: TE) is a diversified, energy-related holding company headquartered in Tampa. Its principal businesses are Tampa Electric, Peoples Gas, TECO Power Services, TECO Transport, TECO Coal, TECO Coalbed Methane, TECO Propane Ventures and TECO Solutions.
Note: This press release contains forward-looking statements, which are subject to the inherent uncertainties in predicting future results and conditions. Certain factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in these forward-looking statements include the following: general economic conditions, particularly those in Tampa Electric’s service area affecting energy sales; weather variations affecting energy sales and operating costs; potential competitive changes in the electric and gas industries, particularly in the area of retail competition; regulatory actions affecting Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas System; commodity price changes affecting the competitive positions of Tampa Electric and the Peoples Gas System as well as the margins at TECO Coalbed Methane and TECO Coal; authorizations from the FERC and energy price changes affecting TECO Power Services’ merchant plants; changes in and compliance with environmental regulations that may impose additional costs or curtail some activities; TECO Power Services’ ability to successfully develop, construct, finance and operate its projects on schedule and within budget; TECO Energy’s ability to find and successfully implement attractive investments in unregulated businesses; interest rates and other factors that could impact TECO Energy’s ability to obtain access to sufficient capital on satisfactory terms; and TECO Coal's ability to successfully operate its synthetic fuel production facilities in a manner qualifying for Section 29 federal income tax credits, which credits could be impacted by changes in tax law or interpretive action by the U. S. Treasury. Some of these factors are discussed more fully under "Investment Considerations" in the company’s Form 8-K filed February 20, 2001, and reference is made thereto.