National Grid said major storms in the US will dampen its full-year profits, which for earnings per share will be largely offset by better finance costs and tax.
The UK and US electricity and gas transmission and delivery giant said underlying group earnings before interest and tax is expected to be in line with original guidance.
Snowstorms in the US led to roughly £140m of remediation costs in the 12 months to the end of March, with an impact of around 3p at the EPS level. The FTSE 100 group expects to recover these costs in future periods and will be reported as timing in our full-year results in May.
But there will be a 2p benefit to headline group EPS from £135m of timing impacts over recoveries, before storm costs, partially offset by a UK in-year under-recovery of approximately £30m.
Finance costs from realisation of gains on investments in its two captive insurance companies are expected to enjoy a benefit from gains of approximately £60m or 1.5p at the EPS level.
Partly thanks to the White House's tax reforms late last year, National Grid's effective tax tax charge is now expected to be approximately 24%, down from the previous expectation of around 27%, with changes in profit mix also providing a benefit.
Last month National Grid issued a noncommittal response to the UK regulator Ofgem's 'RIIO-2 Framework' consultation document, in which it set out its proposed approach to the next gas and electricity transmission price control.
The company noted a “wide range of options” and acknowledged the regulator's focus on “long-term thinking for critical infrastructure, incentive outperformance opportunities”.
Earlier in March, as the nation shivered from both Storm Emma and the 'Beast from the East', National Grid warned the country could run out of natural gas and asked its suppliers to pump more gas into the network and asked some industrial users to taper their consumption. Prices surged, with day-ahead prices briefly touching 120p per therm.