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Ameren Corporation Reported a Fall in Its 4Q15 Earnings

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Ameren’s 4Q15 earnings

Ameren Corporation (AEE) reported its 4Q15 earnings on February 19, 2016. The company reported earnings of $0.12 per share, missing analysts’ estimates by 4 cents. For 4Q14, AEE reported earnings of $0.19 per share.

Milder weather during the fourth quarter weighed on AEE’s earnings. This fall in the company’s earnings was driven by lower sales volumes of power and gas due to higher temperatures in 4Q15. In 2015, Ameren reported earnings of $622 million, or $2.56 per share, compared to $587 million, or $2.40 per share, in 2014.

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Earnings drivers

The Missouri segment of Ameren Corporation (AEE) reported a significant fall in its 4Q15 earnings compared with 4Q14. Earnings from this segment fell from $395 million in 4Q14 to $390 million in 4Q15. Ameren’s Illinois segment posted an earnings gain during the quarter, led by the increased investments in electric transmission and delivery infrastructure. Ameren’s Illinois net income improved from $201 million in 2014 to $214 million in 2015 on a year-over-year basis.

These positive factors were partially offset by higher depreciation and amortization expenses during the quarter. Operations and maintenance expenses decreased during the quarter, led by the lower capital spent on gas for resale. Fuel expenses increased while purchased power expenses remained the same during the quarter in comparison with 4Q14.

Utilities (IDU), particularly those operating in the Midwest region, posted weaker numbers in 4Q15 due to poor sales. Milder weather during the quarter led to lower electricity usage per customer. Dominion Resources (D), American Electric Power (AEP), and Xcel Energy (XEL) have a significant presence in these areas.

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