American States Water Company
) reported second-quarter 2013 pro forma earnings of 85 cents per
share, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny and the
year-ago results by 7.6%.
AMER STATES WTR (AWR): Free Stock Analysis
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MIDDLESEX WATER (MSEX): Free Stock Analysis
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The improvement in results was primarily driven by a rise in
earnings at the company's subsidiary Golden State Water Company;
partially offset by a decline in earnings at American States
Utility Services unit.
In the reported quarter, American States Water's operating
revenues were $120.7 million, beating the Zacks Consensus
Estimate by $1.7 million. Quarterly revenues also increased 5.3%
year over year due to 3.6%, 0.3% and 12.4% year-over-year
increase in sales at the company's
In the quarter under review, American States Water's total
operating expenses were $87.4 million, up 3.4% year over year due
to a rise in costs of water purchased, power purchased for
pumping and resale, and general and administrative expenses and
higher maintenance expenses.
An increase in total operating expenses was more than offset by
higher revenues. In the reported quarter, operating margin
increased to 27.6% from 26.3% in the year-ago quarter.
American States Water's interest expenses totaled $5.8 million,
up 0.8% year over year primarily due to an increase in Water and
Contracted Services segments' expenses.
As of Jun 30, 2013, American States Water's cash and cash
equivalents were $8.5 million versus $23.5 million as of Dec 31,
Long-term debt as of Jun 30, 2013 was $332.4 million versus
$332.5 million as of Dec 31, 2012.
During the first six months of 2013, American States Water's
capital expenditure was $41.2 million compared with $29.4 million
in the year-ago comparable period. An increase in investment was
primarily due to Golden State Water Company's continued capital
Dividend and Stock-split Update
The board of directors of American States Water announced an
increase of 14.1% quarter to quarter in its quarterly dividend to
40.5 cents. This new dividend will be paid on Sep 3, 2013 to
shareholders of record at the close of business on Aug 15, 2013.
Further, the board also approved a 2-for-1 stock split, which
will be effective from about Sep 3, 2013.
Other Company Releases
) second quarter 2013 operating earnings per share of 37 cents
beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 9 cents.
California Water Service Group
) announced second-quarter 2013 operating earnings of 28 cents
per share, in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate.
Middlesex Water Company
) reported second-quarter 2013 earnings per share of 28 cents,
beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny.
It is evident from American States Water's activities that the
company is currently upgrading its existing infrastructure and
also expanding operations via inorganic route. In Jun 2013, the
company announced to acquire Rural Water Co. for expanding its
footprint in California.
American States Water intends to invest $85 million annually over
the next three year rate cycle to improve its subsidiary Golden
State Water Company's water supply and distribution
infrastructures. These ventures will help the company to provide
hygienic water to its customers.
In May 2013, American States Water has received new rate approval
from the California Public Utilities Commission and expects water
gross margin to increase by 6.6% year over year. This kind of
government support will encourage the company to invest more for
the improvement of utility infrastructure.
San Dimas, California-based American States Water caters to the
customers' need in the United States and distributes water,
electricity and other allied services. The company currently has
a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).