Williams Energy Rises, Communications Still Lag in 3Q
Joining the rather large list of third quarter 2000 earnings
success stories, Williams reported net income that was more than
quadruple the figure for the same period last year. Its profits
rose to $121.1 million ($0.27 per share) from $28.1 million ($0.06
"The earnings growth is being driven largely by our electric
power marketing and trading business, the benefit of higher energy
commodity prices and greater productive capacity fueled by the
continuing investment in the growth of our company," said CEO Keith
The company's energy services segment showed the greatest
profit, $311.5 million compared to 155.2 million in 3Q99. The
growth was attributed to a $133.2 million increase in energy
marketing and trading business. Williams also pointed to an
increase in natural gas liquids margins and volumes, and higher
natural gas production prices.
Williams' gas pipeline segment also improved on last year's
third quarter due primarily to earnings contribution from joint
venture investments made since the third quarter of 1999 and higher
transportation and storage revenues. The segments profit rose to
$153.4 million from $142.7 million.
Communications continued to lose money as it absorbs the ongoing
costs of building and staffing the new broadband network company.
The division recorded a $119.9 million loss, compared with a loss
of $81.7 million.
"While all projections can miss their mark due to any number of
factors, we remain confident that 2000 will end up being a banner
year due to our increased productive capacity, solid operating
performance and generally favorable market conditions," Bailey
said. "We expect our energy businesses during this quarter to
continue to produce year-over-year improvement in recurring
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