NSTAR Reports Second Quarter Results for 2008

2008-07-24 15:23:00

NSTAR Reports Second Quarter Results for 2008

BOSTON, Mass.–(EMWPresswire)–NSTAR (NYSE: NST) today reported earnings of $50.4 million, or $0.47 per

common share, for the second quarter of 2008, compared to $50.1 million,

or $0.47 per share reported for the same period in 2007.

Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Thomas J. May said, We

are on track for another positive yeardelivering

superior service to customers and achieving excellent financial results

for our shareholders.

May added, Recently, the Governor signed new

energy legislation into law that places significant importance on

developing renewable energy resources and energy efficiency programs in

Massachusetts. Our NSTAR Green program and our longstanding commitment

to energy efficiency programs are consistent with the new legislation.

Our award-winning energy savings programs are integral parts of our

efforts to lower energy costs for customers and reduce reliance on

fossil fuels.

May continued, Just last week, the

Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities issued a rate decision that

will begin the process of decoupling electric and natural gas rates from

sales volume. Decoupling will allow utility companies to carry out the

provisions of the new energy legislation while at the same time allow

utilities to collect an adequate level of revenues to maintain the

quality and reliability of electric and gas service. The Department

ruled that existing rate plans can continue until the end of their term

and utilities can recover lost base revenues and incentives from

incremental energy efficiency spending.

Factors that impacted earnings for the quarter included an increase in

transmission revenues, higher electric distribution revenues, and lower

interest costs. NSTAR experienced a 0.2% increase in electric sales for

the quarter. Fully offsetting these positive items were increases in

operations and maintenance costs, depreciation and property taxes, and

lower gas sales.

The company also reported diluted earnings of $1.02 per share for the

six-month period ended June 30, 2008, compared to $0.91 per share for

the same six-month period last year. Factors that drove results for the

first half of the year included higher electric distribution and

transmission revenues, higher earnings from unregulated businesses and

lower interest costs. Partially offsetting these positive items were

higher operations and maintenance costs, higher depreciation and

property taxes, and lower gas sales. Year-to-date electric sales were up

0.7% while sales of natural gas were down 3.4%.

NSTAR also reaffirms its 2008 earnings guidance of between $2.16 per

share and $2.26 per share.

Comparative unaudited results for the three, six and twelve-month

periods were as follows:

Financial Data (in thousands, except per share data)

Three months ended June 30:

2008

2007

% Change

Operating revenues

$

743,715

$

725,135

2.6

%

Net income

$

50,369

$

50,100

0.5

%

Earnings per basic and diluted share

$

0.47

$

0.47

%

Weighted average number of shares:

Basic

106,808

106,808

%

Diluted

107,038

107,148

(0.1

)

%

Dividends paid per common share

$

0.35

$

0.325

7.7

%

Six months ended June 30:

2008

2007

% Change

Operating revenues

$

1,639,296

$

1,709,513

(4.1

)

%

Net income

$

109,605

$

97,920

11.9

%

Earnings per share:

Basic

$

1.03

$

0.92

12.0

%

Diluted

$

1.02

$

0.91

12.1

%

Weighted average number of shares:

Basic

106,808

106,808

%

Diluted

107,024

107,153

(0.1

)

%

Dividends paid per common share

$

0.70

$

0.65

7.7

%

Twelve months ended June 30:

2008

2007

% Change

Operating revenues

$

3,191,567

$

3,467,859

(8.0

)

%

Net income

$

233,200

$

214,981

8.5

%

Earnings per basic and diluted share

$

2.18

$

2.01

8.5

%

Weighted average number of shares:

Basic

106,808

106,808

%

Diluted

107,060

107,191

(0.1

)

%

Dividends paid per common share

$

1.35

$

1.255

7.6

%

More detailed financial information will be provided in NSTARs

Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q that is expected to be filed with the

Securities and Exchange Commission on August 1, 2008.

Second Quarter Conference Call

NSTAR is holding a conference call to discuss its second quarter results

on Friday, July 25, 2008 at 9:00 a.m. (Eastern Time). The call is being

webcast and can be accessed on NSTARs

corporate websitewww.nstar.comby

clicking on Investor Relations

and then selecting the webcast icon. A replay of the call will be

archived on NSTARs corporate website in the

Investor Relations section under Webcast

Archives.

Forward-Looking Statements

This earnings release may contain forward-looking statements within the

meaning of the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of

1934. These statements are based on the current expectations, estimates

or projections of management, and are not guarantees of future

performance. Actual results could differ materially from these

statements.

Examples of some important factors that could cause our actual results

or outcomes to differ materially from those discussed in the

forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, the

following: weather conditions; future economic conditions in the

regional and national markets; prices and availability of operating

supplies; prevailing governmental policies and regulatory actions

(including those of the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities and

the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) with respect to allowed rates

of return, rate structure, continued recovery of regulatory assets and

energy costs, financings, municipalization acquisition and disposition

of assets, operation and construction of facilities, changes in tax laws

and policies and changes in, and compliance with, environmental and

safety laws and policies; new governmental regulations or changes to

existing regulations that impose additional operating requirements or

liabilities; changes in specific hazardous waste site conditions and the

specific cleanup technology; changes in available information and

circumstances regarding legal issues and the resulting impact on our

estimated litigation costs; the impact of conservation measures and

self-generation by our customers; the impact of service quality

performance measures; and the impact of terrorist acts.

Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date of this

earnings release, and NSTAR undertakes no obligation to publicly update

forward-looking statements. Other factors in addition to those listed

here could also adversely affect NSTAR. You are advised, however, to

consult any further disclosures we make on related subjects in our

reports to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Profile

NSTAR, headquartered in Boston, is an energy delivery company with

revenues of approximately $3.2 billion and assets of $7.7 billion that

serves 1.4 million customers in Massachusetts, including approximately

1.1 million electric distribution customers in 81 communities and

300,000 natural gas distribution customers in 51 communities. NSTAR also

conducts non-utility, unregulated operations. For more information, go

to www.nstar.com.

NSTAR
Philip Lembo or John Gavin, 781-441-8338

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