FirstEnergy's 2014 Earnings View Mostly Below Analysts' Estimates

By Dow Jones Business News, 
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By Tess Stynes

FirstEnergy Corp. ( FE ) gave 2014 earnings guidance that was mostly lower than analysts' expectations.

For the recently started year, First Energy expects per-share profit of $2.45 to $2.85. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters recently forecast $2.82 a share.

The power company again narrowed its 2013 per-share earnings view to $2.95 to $3.05, from its previously narrowed estimate of $2.90 to $3.10.

First Energy also lowered its quarterly dividend to 36 cents a share. The company said it has paid a quarterly dividend of 55 cents a share since 2008.

FirstEnergy stated that the increased dividend rate is fully supported by the expected earnings from the company's regulated distribution and transmission businesses, and reflects a 58% payout of its expected earnings.

The company's $4.4 billion acquisition of Allegheny Energy Inc. in early 2011 made it one of the largest electricity producers in the U.S. The company serves customers in Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and West Virginia.

First Energy expects to release its fourth-quarter and full-year financial results Feb. 25.

Write to Tess Stynes at tess.stynes@wsj.com

Corrections & Amplifications

This item was corrected at 5:16 p.m. ET to show that FirstEnergy lowered, not raised, its quarterly dividend to 36 cents.

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Referenced Stocks: FE , TRI

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