Regulatory Research Associates Releases Report on Major Rate Case Decisions in First-Half 2010

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Average return on equity authorized was slightly lower than in 2009; rate case activity continues its upward trend.

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Some state commissions have cited customer hardship as a significant factor influencing their equity return authorizations.

According to a recent report from Regulatory Research Associates (RRA), an SNL Energy affiliate, average return on equity authorized for both electric and gas utilities during the first half of 2010 was down slightly compared to 2009.

RRA analysis shows the average ROE for electric utilities was 10.41% (32 observations) for the first two quarters of 2010 versus 10.48% for full-year 2009. The average ROE for gas utilities was 10.10% (20 observations), compared with the 2009 average of 10.19%.

"While the increased business risk associated with the sluggish economy may have increased corporate capital costs, increased average authorized ROEs did not materialize in 2009 or in the first six months of 2010," said Dennis Sperduto, Vice President at RRA. "Some state commissions have cited customer hardship as a significant factor influencing their equity return authorizations."

The report also notes that the number of rate case decisions for energy companies has generally increased over the last several years, with a total of 95 electric and gas rate decisions in 2009 compared to 32 in 2001. In the first half of 2010, 61 cases were decided and the authorized rate increases totaled $3.4 billion, compared to 46 cases and $2.5 billion in the first six months of 2009.

Reports such as ''Major Rate Case Decisions – January-June 2010'' are available exclusively to RRA clients as part of the SNL Energy Unlimited Information Service. For more information on this report and other energy data from SNL, call 866.296.3743 or email EnergySales(at)snl(dot)com.

Visit the SNL Press Room to learn more about resources available to members of the media.

About SNL Energy:
SNL Energy, a division of SNL Financial, provides comprehensive intelligence for the power, natural gas and coal markets through an online service that integrates news, data, analytics and research. Other business sectors covered by SNL Financial include Banking, Financial Services, Insurance, Real Estate and Media & Communications. For more information, visit .

About Regulatory Research Associates (RRA):
RRA provides independent research and consultation on electric utility securities and regulation, with a reputation for unmatched expertise in both areas. Acquired by SNL Energy in 2005, RRA remains the industry leader on regulatory issues affecting utilities.

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