CenterPoint Energy Reports First Quarter 2011 Earnings

Houston, TX – May 5, 2011 - CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (NYSE: CNP) today reported net income of $148 million, or $0.35 per diluted share, for the first quarter of 2011 compared to $114 million, or $0.29 per diluted share, for the same period of 2010. Operating income for the first quarter of 2011 was $364 million compared to $357 million for the same period of 2010.
“This was a good quarter for our company,” said David M. McClanahan, president and chief executive officer of CenterPoint Energy. “We received a favorable decision from the Texas Supreme Court in our true-up case.  Our regulated electric and natural gas utilities and our interstate pipelines performed well, and our field services unit continues to realize growth from the investments we have made in the Haynesville shale.  I remain optimistic about future investment opportunities in our businesses.”

Electric Transmission & Distribution

The electric transmission & distribution segment reported operating income of $101 million for the first quarter of 2011, consisting of $68 million from the regulated electric transmission & distribution utility operations (TDU) and $33 million related to securitization bonds.  Operating income for the first quarter of 2010 was $107 million, consisting of $71 million from the TDU and $36 million related to securitization bonds. Operating income for the TDU benefited from growth of over 29,000 metered customers since March 2010, which was more than offset by higher operation and maintenance expenses primarily associated with system reliability programs.

Natural Gas Distribution

The natural gas distribution segment reported operating income of $142 million for the first quarter of 2011 compared to $139 million for the same period of 2010. The increase in operating income resulted primarily from lower bad debt expense, partially offset by increases in other operating expenses.  Reduced throughput as a result of milder weather was mitigated by weather hedges, weather normalization adjustment mechanisms and increased throughput to large volume customers.   

Interstate Pipelines

The interstate pipelines segment reported operating income of $76 million for the first quarter of 2011 compared to $72 million for the same period of 2010. Higher revenues from firm contracts associated with Phase IV of the Carthage to Perryville pipeline and new power plant transportation contracts were partially offset by reduced revenues from ancillary services.  Operation and maintenance expenses were lower primarily due to an insurance settlement.

In addition to operating income, this segment recorded equity income of $4 million for the first quarter of 2011 from its 50 percent interest in the Southeast Supply Header (SESH) compared to equity income of $3 million for the same period of 2010.

Field Services
The field services segment reported operating income of $36 million for the first quarter of 2011 compared to $23 million for the same period of 2010. Revenue growth from higher gathering volumes, primarily associated with projects in the Haynesville shale, was partially offset by increased operation and maintenance expenses primarily related to facility expansions.

In addition to operating income, this business had equity income of $2 million in each of the first quarters of 2011 and 2010 from its 50 percent interest in a gathering and processing joint venture (Waskom). 

Competitive Natural Gas Sales and Services

The competitive natural gas sales and services segment reported operating income of $10 million for the first quarter of 2011 compared to $15 million for the same period of 2010.  Operating income for the first quarter of 2011 included charges of $2 million resulting from mark-to-market accounting for derivatives associated with certain forward natural gas purchases and sales used to lock in economic margins, compared to gains of $3 million for the same period of 2010. 

True-up Decision

On March 18, 2011, the Texas Supreme Court issued its decision in the company’s true-up case, the proceeding in which the Texas Public Utility Commission (PUC) determined the amount of stranded costs and other amounts due to the company as a result of the restructuring of the Texas electric industry in 1999.  The Supreme Court’s decision remains subject to motions for rehearing and must be implemented through a remand to the PUC.  Based on the Court’s decision, the company plans to seek a Financing Order from the PUC to authorize securitization of approximately $1.85 billion, which includes interest through September 30, 2011. 

Dividend Declaration

On April 21, 2011, CenterPoint Energy’s board of directors declared a regular quarterly cash dividend of $0.1975 per share of common stock payable on June 10, 2011, to shareholders of record as of the close of business on May 16, 2011. 

Outlook Reaffirmed for 2011

CenterPoint Energy reaffirmed its 2011 earnings guidance of $1.04 to $1.14 per diluted share.   This guidance takes into consideration various economic and operational assumptions related to the business segments in which the company operates.  The company has made certain assumptions regarding financing activities and the impact to earnings of various regulatory proceedings.  In providing this guidance, the company has not included the impact of any changes in accounting standards, any impact from significant acquisitions or divestitures, any impact to income from the change in value of Time Warner stocks and the related ZENS securities, or the timing effects of mark-to-market or inventory accounting in the company’s competitive natural gas sales and services business.  It also does not reflect the recording of the Texas Supreme Court’s decision in the TDU’s true-up appeal.  For the impact of these factors on the company’s earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2011, see the attached reconciliation.

Filing of Form 10-Q for CenterPoint Energy, Inc.

Today, CenterPoint Energy, Inc. filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended March 31, 2011.  A copy of that report is available on the company’s website, under the Investors section.  Other filings the company makes with the SEC and other documents relating to its corporate governance can also be found on that site.

Webcast of Earnings Conference Call

CenterPoint Energy’s management will host an earnings conference call on Thursday, May 5, 2011, at 10:30 a.m. Central time or 11:30 a.m. Eastern time.  Interested parties may listen to a live audio broadcast of the conference call on the company’s website, under the Investors section.  A replay of the call can be accessed approximately two hours after the completion of the call and will be archived on the website for at least one year.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution, competitive natural gas sales and services, interstate pipelines, and field services operations.  The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas. Assets total more than $19 billion. With over 8,800 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 135 years.  For more information, visit the company’s website at

This news release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  Actual events and results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements.   The statements in this news release regarding the company’s earnings outlook for 2011 and future financial performance and results of operations, the expected request for future recovery as a result of the Texas Supreme Court’s true-up decision, and any other statements that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements.  Each forward-looking statement contained in this news release speaks only as of the date of this release.  Factors that could affect actual results include (1) the resolution of the true-up proceedings, including, the outcome of requests to the Texas Supreme Court for rehearing, future actions by the Public Utility Commission of Texas in response to the decisions by the Texas Supreme Court and the Texas Third Court of Appeals, and any further appeals thereof; (2) state and federal legislative and regulatory actions or developments relating to the environment, including those related to global climate change; (3) other state and federal legislative and regulatory actions or developments affecting various aspects of CenterPoint Energy’s businesses, including, among others, energy deregulation or re-regulation, pipeline safety, health care reform, financial reform and tax legislation; (4) timely and appropriate rate actions and increases, allowing recovery of costs and a reasonable return on investment; (5) the timing and outcome of any audits, disputes or other proceedings related to taxes; (6) problems with construction, implementation of necessary technology or other issues with respect to major capital projects that result in delays or in cost overruns that cannot be recouped in rates; (7) industrial, commercial and residential growth in CenterPoint Energy’s service territories and changes in market demand, including the effects of energy efficiency measures, and demographic patterns; (8) the timing and extent of changes in commodity prices, particularly natural gas and natural gas liquids, and the effects of geographic and seasonal commodity price differentials; (9) the timing and extent of changes in the supply of natural gas, including supplies available for gathering by CenterPoint Energy’s field services business and transporting by its interstate pipelines; (10)  weather variations and other natural phenomena; (11) the impact of unplanned facility outages; (12) timely and appropriate regulatory actions allowing securitization or other recovery of costs associated with any future hurricanes or natural disasters; (13) changes in interest rates or rates of inflation; (14) commercial bank and financial market conditions, CenterPoint Energy’s access to capital, the cost of such capital, and the results of our financing and refinancing efforts, including availability of funds in the debt capital markets; (15) actions by rating agencies; (16) effectiveness of CenterPoint Energy’s risk management activities; (17) inability of various counterparties to meet their obligations; (18) non-payment for services due to financial distress of CenterPoint Energy’s customers; (19) the ability of GenOn Energy, Inc. (formerly known as RRI Energy, Inc.) and its subsidiaries to satisfy their obligations to CenterPoint Energy and its subsidiaries; (20) the ability of retail electric providers, and particularly the two largest customers of the TDU, to satisfy their obligations to CenterPoint Energy and its subsidiaries; (21) the outcome of litigation brought by or against CenterPoint Energy; (22) CenterPoint Energy’s ability to control costs; (23) the investment performance of pension and postretirement benefit plans; (24) potential business strategies, including restructurings, acquisitions or dispositions of assets or businesses; (25) acquisition and merger activities; and (26) other factors discussed in CenterPoint Energy’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2010, and Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2011, and other reports CenterPoint Energy or its subsidiaries may file from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc. and Subsidiaries
Reconciliation of reported Net Income and diluted EPS to the basis used in providing 2011 annual earnings guidance
Quarter Ended
March 31, 2011
Net IncomeEPS
(in millions)
As reported $ 148 $ 0.35
Timing effects impacting CES(1):
Mark-to-market (gains) losses - natural gas derivative contracts10.00
Natural gas inventory write-downs--
ZENS-related mark-to-market (gains) losses:
Marketable securities(2) (21)(0.05)
Indexed debt securities150.04
Per the basis used in providing 2011 annual earnings guidance$ 143$ 0.34
(1) Competitive natural gas sales and services
(2) Time Warner Inc., Time Warner Cable Inc. and AOL Inc.
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CenterPoint Energy urges customers to be prepared for potential flooding and issues important electric and natural gas safety tips

HOUSTON – June 21, 2017 – CenterPoint Energy has been closely monitoring and preparing for Tropical Storm Cindy, which is anticipated to make landfall later today. The company urges customers to follow important pre-and post-storm electric and natural gas safety tips.


  • Stay away from downed power lines. Be especially mindful of downed lines that could be hidden in flood waters and treat all downed lines as if they are energized. 
  • If you experience flooding and water has risen above the electrical outlets in your home, contact a licensed electrician before turning on the main circuit breaker or trying to restore power. 
  • All electrical appliances and electronic equipment that have been submerged in water need to dry thoroughly for at least one week. Then, have them checked by a qualified repair person before turning them on. Attempting to repair a flood-damaged appliance could result in electrical shock or death. Attempting to restart it could result in further damage and costly repairs.
  • If the outside unit of an air conditioning system has been under water, mud and water may have accumulated in the controls. Have the unit checked by a qualified air conditioning technician.

Natural Gas

  • Do not turn off your natural gas service at the meter; doing so could allow water to enter the natural gas lines.
  • Be alert for the smell of natural gas. If you smell gas, leave the area immediately and tell others to leave, too.
  • If you smell gas, do not turn the lights on or off, smoke, strike a match, use a cell phone or operate anything that might cause a spark, including a flashlight or a generator.
  • Do not attempt to turn natural gas valves on or off. Once safely away from the area, call 888-876-5786 and CenterPoint Energy will send a trained service technician.
  • If your home was flooded, call a licensed plumber or gas appliance technician to inspect your appliances and gas piping to make sure they are in good operating condition before calling CenterPoint Energy to reconnect service. This includes outdoor gas appliances including pool heaters, gas grills and gas lights.
  • Before cleaning debris, digging on your property or to locate underground natural gas lines and other underground utility lines, call 811 - the nationwide Call Before You Dig number.
  • Be aware of where your natural gas meter is located. As debris is put out for heavy trash pickup, make sure it is placed away from the meter. In many areas the meter may be located near the curb. If debris is near a gas meter, the mechanized equipment used by trash collectors could pull up the meter, damaging it and causing a potentially hazardous situation. If this happens, leave the area immediately and call CenterPoint Energy at 888-876-5786.

For the latest information on power outages:

CenterPoint Energy names 2016 Energy Efficiency Achievement Award recipients

MINNEAPOLIS – June 15, 2017 – CenterPoint Energy recently announced the three recipients of the 2016 Conservation Improvement Program (CIP) Energy Efficiency achievement awards at the 2017 Energy Efficiency and Technology Conference: Customer of the Year; Trade Ally of the Year; and Most Innovative Project of the year.

"We congratulate our winners and are confident that our Conservation Improvement Programs make it easier than ever for customers to become more energy efficient and save money on their monthly energy bills," said Brad Tutunjian, vice president of Gas Operations for CenterPoint Energy in Minnesota.  "Taking steps toward becoming energy efficient is good for consumers' wallets and the environment."

CenterPoint Energy's 2016 Energy Efficiency Achievement Awards:

  • 2016 Conservation Improvement Program Customer of the Year: General Mills, Inc.
    General Mills has demonstrated a long-term commitment to energy conservation. The company completed two major conservation improvement program projects in 2016.  This first was a project for custom-fit insulation jackets for 800 different steam fittings, saving 9,344 dekatherms (Dth) per year. General Mills said the technology shows promise for its other commercial and industrial sites.  The second project used CenterPoint Energy's Process Steam Trap Audit program to test 472 traps at General Mills' James Ford Bell Test Lab. The audit showed that 18 of the traps had failed. Replacements saved the company 4,436 Dth per year.
  • 2016 Trade Ally of the Year: State Supply
    In 2016, State Supply played an important role in facilitating and expediting natural gas rebates for their customers. The company's focus on steam trap projects enabled CenterPoint Energy to set new savings records for prescriptive rebates and steam trap repair/replacement rebates.  State Supply's commitment to their customers, as well as to CenterPoint Energy's Conservation Improvement Program, resulted in more than 157,557 Dth of savings. 
  • Most Innovative Project of the Year: Utepils Brewing
    Utepils Brewing is a new micro-brewery located on the west side of Minneapolis. In 2016, the company installed state-of-the-art German brewery technology involving heat recovery and vacuum de-pressurization. This step helped  decrease the energy consumption of the brewing process by 70 percent.

"We would like to take this opportunity to thank those who participated in our CIP programs in 2016 and helped achieve record natural gas savings of just over 2.0 billion cubic feet.  The savings during 2016 were the equivalent to the annual natural gas usage of 22,200 residential homes and the emissions savings were the equivalent to removing 17,800 cars from the road for one year," added Tutunjian.

CenterPoint Energy is committed to energy conservation and has been a leader in delivering Conservation Improvement Programs in Minnesota since 1992.  The company has significantly increased its energy efficiency programs to help residential and business customers lower their energy costs. In addition to foodservice equipment rebates, the company offers rebates for high-efficiency heating systems, water heaters, industrial process equipment and custom projects for commercial and industrial businesses.

To learn more about how to get started saving money and being more energy efficient today, visit

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The company also owns 54.1 percent of the common and subordinated units representing limited partner interests in Enable Midstream Partners, a publicly traded master limited partnership it jointly controls with OGE Energy Corp.,  which owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets. With more than 7,700 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 150 years. In Minnesota, CenterPoint Energy is the state's largest natural gas distribution utility, serving about 840,000 customers in 260 communities. The utility also operates a non-regulated business in Minnesota called Home Service Plus®. For more information, visit

CenterPoint Energy celebrates World Blood Donor Day by helping raise awareness of the need for all blood types

HOUSTON – June 14, 2017 – Today is the World Health Organization's World Blood Donor Day, raising awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products and thanking blood donors for their life-saving gifts of blood.

CenterPoint Energy strives to make a positive difference in the communities served. The company's blood drive program addresses a critical need – the need for life-saving blood. In 2016, CenterPoint Energy employees donated 4,787 units of blood, which is enough to impact 14,361 lives.

"Lending a helping hand is a strong part of our company culture. Our charitable giving and employee volunteerism strategy are guided by our core values and desire to be a valuable part of the communities we serve," said Diane Englet, senior director of Corporate Community Relations for CenterPoint Energy.

In partnership with the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center, which serves the world's largest medical campus, CenterPoint Energy employees in Houston have collected 67,725 units of blood since 2002, enough to save more than 203,000 lives. Several drives went beyond being held at the company's facilities and engaged community partners to support collection efforts.

To see what CenterPoint Energy is doing in the community, please visit

CenterPoint Energy to use drones to help expedite damage assessment and response following a hurricane or severe weather

HOUSTON - June 1, 2017 – Hurricane season officially begins today and CenterPoint Energy is gearing up by incorporating the use of unmanned aerial systems (UAS), commonly referred to as drones, into its Emergency Operating Plan (EOP). Drones could help expedite the company's ability to assess damage to its electric transmission and distribution system following a hurricane.

"We had the opportunity to test drone technology following last week's severe weather in Sealy, Texas, and see potential for drones to play a key role in storm and disaster response," said Kenny Mercado, senior vice president of Electric Operations for CenterPoint Energy.

"Obstacles such as downed trees or flooded roads make it difficult for crews to assess damage following a severe weather event, which in turn can hinder response and restoration time," added Mercado. "Using drones in areas that are inaccessible by foot to capture high-resolution imagery in real time will help us assess damage and deploy the right resources in the right places to restore power."

CenterPoint Energy has used helicopters in the past to assess system damage and will still use them as necessary; however, drones can typically be deployed faster than helicopters.

"We also urge amateur drone operators not to fly them following a natural disaster," said Mercado. "Doing so will not only hinder CenterPoint Energy's ability to assess damage, but may also interfere with the drones being used by emergency response agencies to assist in the recovery effort."

Outage duration could be two weeks or longer depending on storm severity

While CenterPoint Energy plans to use drones to help expedite damage assessment and restoration times, the company urges customers to have their own emergency plan, particularly if they depend on electricity for life-sustaining equipment.

"No two storms are alike, which makes it difficult to forecast what the exact damage to our electric system could be and how long outages could last," Mercado said. "Customers need to be prepared to be without power for two weeks or possibly longer, depending on the severity of the storm. If a storm is approaching and someone in your home depends on electricity for life-sustaining equipment, you need to make other arrangements to provide for those needs."

For information and resources on hurricane preparedness, visit

CenterPoint Energy makes significant progress restoring power in Sealy

HOUSTON, TX – May 25, 2017 – CenterPoint Energy continues to make significant progress restoring power in the hard-hit area of Sealy, Texas. following Tuesday night's severe weather.

The company has already restored power to more than 48,000 customers, and is on target to restore service to all customers who are able to receive it by late this evening. In addition to damaging CenterPoint Energy's electric infrastructure and equipment, the storm may have damaged some customer-owned equipment. Customers should check their weatherhead – the point where power enters the home through a pipe. If this equipment is damaged, customers will need to contact a qualified electrician to make sure it is repaired before the company is able to restore service to them. 

CenterPoint Energy urges customers to always stay at least 10 feet away from downed power lines and report them to us at 713-207-2222. For the latest information on outages, visit