third-quarter earnings rose 9.2%, as a drop in natural gas pipeline operating revenue was more than offset by natural gas pipeline cost of goods sold which boosted gross margins.
The company earned $121.4 million, or $1.31 a share, in the quarter, compared with $111.1 million, or $1.22 a share, a year ago. Income from continuing operations, was $1.32 a share.
Revenue fell 32% from a year ago to $1.13 billion, primarily due to lower revenues in Enogex's marketing business from significantly lower natural gas prices.
The company reduced its earnings guidance for the full year 2006 to $2.15 a share to $2.25 a share from $2.25 a share to $2.40 a share. For the year 2007 the company expects its income from continuing operations of $2.30 to $2.50 a share. Analysts on an average expect the company to make $2.36 a share for the year 2006 and $2.18 a share for the year 2007.
"It was another summer of record-setting demand on our systems and another outstanding performance by our employees to serve our customers," said the company. "Still, the summer heat took a toll on our system and highlighted the need to invest in additional capacity and to replace aging infrastructure. In the fourth quarter we look forward to completing our new wind farm, filing for regulatory pre-approval of a new generating unit at our sooner power plant location, and making our case for a rate increase in Arkansas."
Shares rose 37 cents to $38.95.
This story was created through a joint venture between TheStreet.com and IRIS.