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SOUTHERN COMPANY ANNOUNCES EARNINGS

 SOUTHERN COMPANY ANNOUNCES EARNINGS
 ATLANTA, Nov. 26 /PRNewswire/ -- "Our earnings through the first


10 months of this year are stronger than the depressed results for the same period last year, but our financial performance continues to be affected by higher costs and a weak economy that has slowed the growth of energy use," Southern Company President Edward L. Addison said today.
 The Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is the parent firm of five electric utilities: Alabama Power, Georgia Power, Gulf Power, Mississippi Power and Savannah Electric. The Southern Company's common stock is one of the 20 most widely held corporate stocks in America.
 Addison announced that earnings for the first 10 months of 1991 totaled $728 million or $2.31 a share -- up $178 million or 57 cents per share from the corresponding period in 1990. He noted that net income for the first 10 months of last year was reduced by an after-tax write-off of $218 million -- or 69 cents a share. The charge was taken after the Georgia Supreme Court refused to review a decision by the state public service commission disallowing a portion of the company's investment in Plant Vogtle.
 For the 12 months ending Oct. 31, net income was $782 million or $2.48 a share -- up $167 million or 53 cents per share from the comparable 12 months a year ago when earnings also were affected by the charge related to Plant Vogtle.
 In addition, Addison noted that the current results do not reflect the recent settlement with Gulf States Utilities that ended a five-year dispute over major power sales contracts between the utility systems.
 Under the settlement, Gulf States is providing the Southern subsidiaries with a financial package -- including cash, common stock and deferred payments -- that has a net present value of up to $300 million, before taxes.
 Accounting reviews are under way to determine the exact impact of the settlement on The Southern Company's 1991 earnings.
 Discussing recent rate developments, Addison said the Georgia Public Service Commission in September granted Georgia Power $117 million annually in additional revenues -- an increase of 3.4 percent. The new rates took effect Oct. 3.
 The rate order also defers some of the costs related to the purchase of capacity from the co-owners of Plant Vogtle and provides for lower depreciation rates. In addition, the order includes a return on common equity of 12.25 percent.
 Reviewing system operations, Addison said electricity use by retail customers in the four-state area rose seven-tenths of 1 percent during the first 10 months of 1991. In-home electricity needs were up four-tenths of 1 percent to 28.7 billion kilowatthours. Electricity use by commercial customers -- offices, stores and other non-manufacturing firms -- gained 2.1 percent to 25.8 billion kilowatthours. Industrial energy use decreased one-tenth of 1 percent to 38.6 billion kilowatthours.
 Energy sales under long-term contracts with neighboring utilities totaled 16.7 billion kilowatthours during the first 10 months of 1991 -- down 6.5 percent from the corresponding period a year ago.
 Total sales of electricity to customers of The Southern Company -- including neighboring utilities -- were down 1.1 percent in the first 10 months of this year as compared with the same period in 1990.
 -0- 11/26/91
 /CONTACT: Gale Klappa or David Mould of The Southern Company, 404-455-1077/
 (SO) CO: The Southern Company ST: Georgia IN: UTI SU: ERN


BN-BR -- AT011 -- 7368 11/26/91 14:01 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 26, 1991
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