Progress Energy earnings miss Street forecast

Raleigh-based utility giant reports $181 million profit, down $18 million from a year ago. Revenues do increase 3 percent. Company reaffirms its profit guidance for the year.

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Progress Energy
RALEIGH, N.C.RALEIGH, N.C. – Progress Energy (NYSE: PGN) fell 5 cents per share short of Wall Street expectations in its second quarter earnings report Tuesday morning.

The utility services provider reported earnings of $181 million, or 64 cents per share, on revenues of $2.31 billion. Analysts polled by Thomson First call expected a 69-cent profit.

A year ago, Progress report profits of $199 million, or 76 cents per share, on revenues of $2.24 billion.

Progress’ revenues, which were up 3 percent from 2008, did top analysts’ expectations of $2.28 billion.

“Despite the lingering effects of the economic recession, our company has performed well operationally and financially through the first two quarters of the year," said Bill Johnson, chairman and chief executive officer of Progress, in a statement.

“We continue to aggressively pursue the three major components of our balanced solution strategy: significant expansion of our energy efficiency programs, greater investment in cost-effective renewable energy and needed investments in state-of-the-art plants and other facilities,” he added.

Progress did reaffirm its guidance for 2009 at between $2.95 and $3.15 per share.

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