TOPEKA, Kan., – Westar Energy, Inc. (NYSE: WR) recently announced earnings of $324 million, or $2.27 per share, for 2017 compared with earnings of $347 million, or $2.43 per share, for 2016. Fourth quarter 2017 earnings were $34 million, or $0.24 per share, compared with earnings of $54 million, or $0.38 per share, for the fourth quarter 2016.
Lower earnings per share for 2017, compared with the prior year, were the result of lower retail sales attributable to mild weather and having received no corporate-owned life insurance income. The lower revenue was partially offset by lower income tax expense.
Earnings per share for the fourth quarter 2017, compared with 2016, decreased primarily from writing off deferred income tax assets due to the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Lower corporate-owned life insurance income, offset in part by reduced operating and maintenance costs, also contributed to lower earnings per share.
The Board of Directors also declared a quarterly dividend of 40 cents per share on the company's common stock payable April 2, 2018, to shareholders of record as of March 9, 2018. This results in an indicated annual dividend of $1.60 per share.
As part of the merger of equals with Great Plains Energy Incorporated, the combined company is expected, upon closing, to pay an initial dividend that would result in a 15% increase for Westar Energy shareholders.
Conference Call and Additional Company Information
Westar Energy management will host a conference call Thursday, Feb. 22 with the
investment community at 10:00 a.m. ET (9:00 a.m. CT). Investors, media and the public may listen to the conference call by dialing (844) 646-4526, conference ID 8299426. A webcast of the live conference call will be available at www.WestarEnergy.com.
Disclaimer: Kevin Surbaugh is an independent sales representative of Youngevity(YGYI) and is a shareholder in the publicly traded company. He also has positions in Coca-Cola (KO) but has no positions in any other stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 96 hours.
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