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cut its 2001 and 2002 earnings estimates and put 34 development projects on hold in an effort to slash as much as $2 billion in capital expenses.

The company said it expects to earn $1.95 a share before various items for 2001 and to post adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of $1.6 billion. Analysts polled by First Call had been predicting earnings of $2 a share for the year.

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For 2002, Calpine said it expects to earn $1.70 a share and post adjusted EBITDA of $2 billion. Analysts had been predicting 2002 earnings of $2.20 a share.

The San Jose, Calif., energy company said the 34 projects are in "advanced development" and will proceed "when there is an established market need for additional generating resources at prices that will allow the company to meet its established investment criteria." The company also noted that it "must have access to the capital required to build each project under attractive terms."

The company will complete 27 existing projects, which it said will allow it to meet a goal of more than doubling its generating capacity to 23,200 megawatts by the end of this year.

The company's shares were down $1.20, or 8.7%, to $12.65 on Instinet.