E.ON cuts 2020 outlook as coronavirus crisis bites

FILE PHOTO: Electric car parking place with the charging stations is seen at the front of the German utility E.ON headquarters in Essen, Germany, May 9, 2018. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - E.ON, Germany’s largest energy group, on Wednesday cut its outlook for the current year as the coronavirus crisis hit its networks and retail business in the second quarter.

“We can now see much more clearly than at the end of the first quarter and can look ahead to the second half of the current year with greater confidence,” Chief Executive Johannes Teyssen said.

The group now expects adjusted earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) of 3.6 billion to 3.8 billion euros ($4.2-$4.5 billion), while adjusted net profit is seen at 1.5 billion to 1.7 billion euros.

It had previously forecast adjusted EBIT of 3.9 billion to 4.1 billion euros and adjusted net profit of 1.7 billion to 1.9 billion euros.

COVID-19 is expected to deal a 300 million euro hit to earnings in 2020, provided no further lockdowns are ordered, E.ON said, adding half of that was due to issues of a regulatory nature and could be recovered in the 2022-24 period.

Reporting by Christoph Steitz; Editing by Michelle Martin