Nov 5 Southern Co, the No.2 U.S. power
company by market value, reported a 6 percent rise in quarterly
profit as reductions in non-fuel operations and maintenance
expenses offset lower sales arising from mild weather and an
"After a promising first six months of 2012, the economy has
slowed due to uncertainty around the elections, the fiscal cliff
and the slowing world economy," Chief Executive Thomas Fanning
said in a statement.
Total energy sales to the company's customers in the
Southeast, including wholesale sales, fell 4.9 percent in the
"We continue to believe that the long-term prospects for the
Southeast remain strong relative to other portions of the
country," Fanning said, adding that the near-term outlook for
the national economy was unclear.
As power demand tends to reflect growth in a region,
comments on the economy by Southern Co and bigger rival Duke
Energy Corp are keenly followed by investors.
Southern Co, which supplies power in Alabama, Georgia,
Florida, and Mississippi, has been immune to the devastation
caused by superstorm Sandy, which has caused power outages along
the U.S. East Coast.
Earnings rose to $976 million, or $1.11 per share, in the
third-quarter, from $916 million, or $1.07 per share, a year
Operating revenues fell 7 percent to $5.05 billion.
Shares of Southern Co, valued at about $40 billion, closed
at $45.77 on the New York Stock Exchange on Friday.