(Alliance News) - United Utilities Group PLC on Thursday said it anticipates lower year-on-year earnings for the first half of financial 2021, in line with expectations.
The FTSE 100-listed water utility firm stated revenue for the six months ending September 30 is expected to be lower than the first half of last year, reflecting its allowed regulatory revenue changes and lower consumption from businesses as a result of Covid-19. However, it noted the negative impact was partly offset by higher consumption from households.
Underlying operating profit is also expected to be down year-on-year due to lower revenue and an anticipated moderate increase in infrastructure renewals expenditure.
Warrington-based United Utilities said cash collection from household customers has been consistent with targets set prior to Covid-19 pandemic. While it anticipates bad debt may increase as government support schemes come to an end, it has "confidence in the adequacy of the provision made" at the March 2020 year-end.
Looking ahead, the company highlighted its operating performance is on track against its AMP7 plan, adding that it continues to target net outcome delivery incentive outperformance for the full year.
Shares in United Utilities were trading 1.7% higher at 865.20 pence each on Thursday morning in London.
By Ife Taiwo; firstname.lastname@example.org
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