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DTE's 1Q Earnings Slip
DETROIT— DTE Energy yesterday reported 2005 first quarter earnings of $149 million, a decline of 22 percent from the $190 million of the year-ago quarter — despite a $280 million rise in cash from operations to $413 million.
Operating earnings held steady at $153 million, a slight bump from $152 million in 2004.
“While the quarter included two timing items that shifted earnings to future periods, the underlying earnings power and strong cash performance show we are on track to meet our 2005 financial goals,” stated Anthony F. Earley Jr., DTE Energy chairman and CEO.
“We have made tremendous progress at Detroit Edison, and we expect to continue this progress with the resolution of our rate restructuring filing by the end of 2005.”
DTE Energy Gas, which includes MichCon services, recorded operating earnings of 35 cents per diluted share vs. 45 cents per diluted share in first quarter 2004. Utility operations were down 13 cents per diluted share primarily due to a timing-related tax adjustment, higher reserves for uncollectible accounts receivables and increased pension and health care costs.
Company officials believed this highlights the need for the Michigan Public Service Commission to issue an order for final rate relief at MichCon.
Utility operations for DTE Energy Resources, the power generation services of Detroit Edison, increased 2 cents per share during the 2005 first quarter. An increase in gross margins was attributed to a rate increase in the MPSC’s final rate order issued in November.
Due to high oil prices, DTE Energy recognized mark-to-market gains of 18 cents per share. In the absence of revenue deferral and market-to-market oil price derivative gains, operating earnings from synthetic fuel operations would have been 11 cents per share higher in first quarter of 2005 than in first quarter 2004.
DTE Energy Distributionreported operating earnings of 23 cents per diluted share vs. 15 cents per diluted share in first quarter 2004. It experienced a quarter-over-quarter increase of 8 cents per diluted share, driven primarily by a decrease in operation and maintenance expense due to the MPSC-mandated reclassification of high voltage transmission costs to Detroit Edison’s power generation unit and other cost-saving initiatives.