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UTILICORP ANNOUNCES FIRST QUARTER RESULTS

 KANSAS CITY, Mo., April 28 /PRNewswire/ -- UtiliCorp United (NYSE: UCU) today announced that first quarter earnings per share were up about 13 percent over last year's first quarter results. The improvement was due primarily to recent successes in obtaining rate relief and increased natural gas sales as a result of normal winter weather conditions and the addition of a new gas distribution utility.
 Net income for the three-month period ended March 31, 1993 was $34.8 million, compared with $28.6 million in the 1992 first quarter. Primary earnings per share for the quarter were $.87, versus $.77 in last year's period. Income from operations was $78.6 million, compared with $64.1 million. Revenues were $481 million, versus $366 million. Average common shares outstanding increased from 34.7 million in the 1992 first quarter to 38 million in the 1993 period. The increase was due primarily to a public offering of 4.8 million new shares in February 1993.
 First quarter results reflected contributions from a 124,000- customer natural gas distribution utility in Nebraska, acquired for $78 million from Arkla (NYSE: ALG) earlier this year. The system has been integrated with UtiliCorp's Peoples Natural Gas division. UtiliCorp has entered another agreement with Arkla to acquire a gas distribution utility serving approximately 22,000 customers in the Wichita, Kan., area. That $25 million transaction is expected to be completed in the third quarter this year. UtiliCorp's improved first quarter results reflected the most active year of rate case activity in the company's history. In 1992, UtiliCorp implemented or reached agreements authorizing rate increased totalling $14.9 million in annualized revenues.
 At Aquila Energy, increasingly stiff competition in the gas industry weakened marketing margins and reduced spot market profits during the 1993 first quarter. Aquila's long-term contract sales portfolio was more profitable during the 1992 first quarter because 1992 gas volumes were higher and gas was supplied to those contracts at a lower average cost. Aquila's outlook for 1993, however, remains favorable because of profit stability from the subsidiary's long-term contract sales portfolio combined with increased natural gas liquids production and stable pricing at Aquila's Texas-based Aquila Southwest unit.
 Based in Kansas City, UtiliCorp provides gas and electric utility service to more than a million customers in eight states and the province of British Columbia.
 UTILICORP UNITED INC.
 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF INCOME
 For the three months For the twelve months
 ended March 31, ended March 31,
 1993 1992(A) 1993 1992(A)
 (in millions except per share amounts)
 (UNAUDITED)
 Revenues $ 480.9 $ 366.0 $ 1,413.7 $ 1,124.6
 Expenses 402.3 301.9 1,230.3 928.6
 Income From
 Operations 78.6 64.1 183.4 196.0
 Interest Charges
 and Other 22.2 19.7 87.0 75.8
 Income Before
 Income Taxes 56.4 44.4 96.4 120.2
 Income Taxes 21.6 15.8 37.4 43.2
 Net Income 34.8 28.6 59.0 77.0
 Preference Dividends 1.8 1.9 6.7 7.8
 Earnings Available
 for Common Shares $ 33.0 $ 26.7 $ 52.3 $ 69.2
 Weighted Average Common
 Shares Outstanding:
 Primary 37.97 34.65 35.76 31.03
 Fully Diluted 41.56 38.52 36.53 35.28
 Earnings per Common Share:
 Primary $.87 $.77 $1.46 $2.23
 Fully Diluted .83 .73 1.45 2.15
 (A) Restated to reflect change to full cost accounting.
 -0- 4/28/93
 /CONTACT: Roger Dick of UtiliCorp United, 816-691-3504/
 (UCU)


CO: UtiliCorp United ST: Missouri IN: UTI SU: ERN

KD -- NY085 -- 2136 04/28/93 14:22 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Apr 28, 1993
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