EDF H1 profit nearly doubles on Brazilian sale gain
The results come after Electricite de France won a 1.7% increase, starting Aug. 15, for regulated power prices in France, where the company has four times the sales it has in Britain, the utility's next-largest market. Its UK unit, which supplies about a quarter of the country's power needs, in July said it would raise household prices 8%. French Finance Minister Thierry Breton said on July 7 the government is ready to consider allowing some companies that buy electricity on the unregulated market to revert to regulated prices because they are struggling to cope with rising power costs. The measure will be discussed in France's parliament as part of an energy bill required to allow state-controlled Gaz de France SA to merge with Suez SA. State-controlled Electricite de France in May said earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization will grow between 3% and 6% a year for the next three years. The state of France in November sold 13% of EDF and retains an 86% stake. The company's shares have risen 40% this year, the second-best performance in the 19-member Bloomberg Europe Electric Index, trailing only North Yorkshire, UK-based Drax Group Plc. The index has climbed 17% in the period. EDF's € 2 billion of 5% bonds maturing in 2009 dropped to 102.88 cents on the euro on Aug. 30 from 105.60 on the euro at the end of 2005, according to prices from RBC Capital Markets Ltd. The bond's yield was 3.71%, up from 3.06% at the end of 2005, according to RBC. (Bloomberg)
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