Duke Energy earnings jump 30 percent

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - Power company Duke Energy Corp posted a 30 percent rise in first-quarter profit, beating Wall Street forecasts on gains in its utility and wholesale power businesses.

Net income rose to $465 million, or 37 cents per share, from $357 million, or 28 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items, discontinued operations and the market value of its trading portfolio, earnings per share rose to 35 cents from 30 cents a year ago.

On that basis, the earnings beat analysts' consensus forecast for earnings of 31 cents per share, according to Reuters Estimates.

Revenues rose to $3.34 billion from $3.04 billion.

Duke's commercial power business, which owns about 8,100 megawatts of electricity generation, saw earnings surge to $146 million from $13 million a year earlier. That gain was helped by an increase in the value of its trading positions, which offset higher expenses from plant maintenance.

Duke's electricity and gas utility operations posted a jump in earnings to $637 million from $574 million last year.


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