Scottish & Southern beats profit forecast

City A.M. Reporter
Scottish & Southern Energy reported an annual profit above analysts' expectations helped by favourable pricing of electricity units and new cost controls.

SSE said changes in the price of electricity units following the introduction of new price controls, combined with cost controls in its networks businesses, bolstered full-year profit at the company, prompting a seven per cent dividend increase.

Adjusted pretax profit rose 1.6 per cent to £1.31bn.

The company announced a total dividend for the year of 75 pence.

Perth, Scotland-based SSE, however, said lower-than-expected renewable energy output and higher-than-forecast wholesale gas prices weighed on profit and added the economic outlook for the UK and Ireland in 2011/12 remained uncertain.

"The global nature of energy markets means that SSE, like every other company in the sector, has to be prepared to manage the energy consequences of exceptional and unpredictable events such as political upheaval in the Middle East and the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan," the company said.