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Hot summer weather increases electricity demand, boosts Hydro One revenue and profit

A Hydro One office is pictured in Mississauga on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darren Calabrese

TORONTO — Hydro One Ltd. reported its latest quarterly revenue and profit were up compared with a year ago as a hot summer helped bolster electricity demand.

The power utility says its net income surged 17 per cent to $281 million or 47 cents per share in the three months ended Sept. 30, up from $241 million or 40 cents per share a year earlier.

Revenue reached $1.9 billion, up nearly 20 per cent from $1.6 billion in the third quarter of 2019 due to higher peak demand and distribution revenues from rate hikes approved by the Ontario Energy Board and stronger consumption.

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Analysts on average had expected a profit of 42 cents per share on $1.86 billion of revenues, according to financial data firm Refinitiv.

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Purchased power rose 34.7 per cent to $993 million while revenue net of purchase was up 6.3 per cent to $910 million.

The Ontario government announced in its budget Thursday that it will subsidize hydro rates for medium and large commercial and industrial businesses and keep in place rate protections such as a ban on disconnections for residential customers.

“We were pleased to see the government’s commitment to managing electricity costs, so Ontario’s businesses can be competitive on the global stage,” CEO Mark Poweska said in a conference call.

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Hydro One chief financial officer Christopher Felix Lopez said the main driver of higher earnings was warmer weather that increased peak demand and increased energy consumption.

Peak demand increased 12 per cent in July and August and three per cent in September.

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Hydro One is Ontario’s largest electricity transmission and distribution provider.

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