- Duke Energy lost $817 million in the second quarter as it wrote off $2 billion in costs related to the shutdown of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline project.
- That was down from a profit of $820 million in the same period a year ago.
- The company also cut $170 million in expenses to adjust to reduced energy demand amid the coronavirus pandemic. That came by trimming contractors, reducing overtime, adjusting the timing of planned power plant outages, and cutting technology and other costs. No layoffs of permanent staff were executed.
Duke lost $1.13 per share, but adjusted for the pipeline and other one-time expenses, earnings per share were $1.08. That was 4 cents better than the consensus estimate of analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research.
The nation’s largest electric utility by customers reported revenue of $5.42 billion in the quarter, down from $5.9 billion a year ago. Most of that was the result of lower electricity sales. But demand did not fall as much as Duke expected.
Duke says it expects residential and business energy sales to be down 3% to 5% overall this year. Duke and partner Dominion Energy announced July 5 that they were canceling the 600-mile gas pipeline amid rising costs and years of legal and environmental delays.
Duke told investors it still expects full-year earnings to be in the range of $5.05 to $5.45 per share. That’s unchanged from the first quarter as the pandemic began.