TECO Energy, Inc. (NYSE:TE) today reported fourth quarter 2012 net income of $45.1 million, or $0.21 per share, compared with $53.2 million, or $0.25 per share in the fourth quarter of 2011. Net income from continuing operations was $45.6 million, or $0.21 per share, in the 2012 fourth quarter, compared with $47.3 million, or $0.22 per share, for the same period in 2011. The 2012 fourth-quarter loss of $0.5 million reported in discontinued operations reflected the operating results from TECO Guatemala, and the closing of the sale in December 2012 (see Discontinued Operations below).
The 2012 full-year net income was $212.7 million, or $0.99 per share, compared with $272.6 million, or $1.27 per share, in 2011. The 2012 full-year net income from continuing operations was $246.0 million, or $1.14 per share, compared with $250.8 million, or $1.17 per share, in 2011. The 2012 full-year loss reported in discontinued operations was $33.3 million, or $0.15 per share, compared with net income of $21.8 million, or $0.10 per share, in 2011.
TECO Energy President and Chief Executive Officer John Ramil said, “Our operating results this quarter reflect stronger customer growth but another mild start to the winter at our Florida utilities. We are very pleased that the Florida Public Service Commission unanimously approved the need for our Polk expansion project in December. TECO Coal reported strong results on lower volumes and was proactive in reducing production and cost and was able to deliver good 2012 results even in a weak market.
“Our sale of the Guatemalan companies reflects our commitment to our core utility operations. We took advantage of an attractive opportunity to obtain good value and closed on the sale of those operations in December.”Ramil went on to say, “Looking ahead to 2013, it will be a transitioning and challenging year for TECO Energy. While our team members have instituted cost controls and efficiency measures allowing Tampa Electric to operate in 2012 at 2007 cost levels, continued investment in required infrastructure, a slow economic recovery and mounting operations and maintenance cost pressures will cause Tampa Electric to earn below the bottom of its allowed return on equity range. As a result, Tampa Electric will be filing in the spring for a base rate increase that is estimated at approximately $135 million for new rates in early 2014. We expect Peoples Gas to continue to benefit from low natural gas prices and customer growth from a slowly improving economy. And although TECO Coal will reduce production again in 2013, at the middle of our cost and production guidance ranges it is positioned to produce $12 million of net income in 2013 in the current weak coal market.”