PJM’s latest crisis—the underfunding of financial transmission rights that we’ve seen over the last few years—pushes regulators right to the edge. How far do they trust wholesale power markets? Do they accept the idea, proven by a famous economist, that freely traded financial instruments can work just as well—better even—than firm, physical contract rights?
(March 2013) NSTAR appoints new president; Southern Company names new financial management team; BPA gets new administrator; plus management changes at AEP, Duke, ITC, ConEdison, GDF Suez, ERCOT, MISO, NARUC, and others.
(November 2012) Westinghouse Electric names former Progress Energy Executive as president and CEO. FirstEnergy makes numerous executive changes and appointments; Pepco hires new general counsel; plus executive appointments and announcements at AEP, PPL, PG&E, ITC Holdings, Dominion, EPRI, SEIA, and others.
Constellation completes 16.1 MW PV project in Maryland; Ikea commissions 31st solar project, reaching 38 MW installed; IPL and MidAmerican install $545 million scrubber in Iowa; DTE partners with Enbridge and Spectra on pipeline for Utica shale gas; plus contracts and announcements from Dominion, Sempra, Southern Company, AEP, EPRI, Itron, Landis+Gyr, Opower and others.
A challenging year brings a change in the rankings.
By Michael T. Burr
(September 2012) Our annual financial ranking shows some remarkable shifts among the industry’s shareholder value leaders. Despite flat demand and low commodity prices, investor-owned utilities are investing heavily in capital assets. Investment discipline and operational excellence distinguish leaders on the path to financial performance.
The industry’s slow-and-steady pace of mergers seems to be picking up speed, as larger and well-positioned players overtake smaller and weaker targets. Realizing the greatest value from consolidation requires companies to assess their strengths and weaknesses and focus on performance improvement—both before and after a deal gets done.
PJM and MISO ran from the altar once before. Now there’s talk of a shotgun wedding.
By Bruce W. Radford
Utilities in the Midwest ISO want greater access to sell into PJM’s lucrative market. But that might require a virtual merger of the two RTOs — a move rejected seven years ago as too costly, and perhaps still impractical today.
Doing the right thing can drive utility stock performance.
Richard Rudden and Kyle Rudden
Utilities get little credit for their efforts to strengthen the sustainability of their businesses. But these efforts have paid dividends in stock performance, capital costs, regulatory relationships, and brand value. Capturing the greatest value for shareholders will require utilities to become better understood as socially responsible enterprises.
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