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United Utilities current trading in line with company expectations


United Utilities Group PLC (LON:UU.) said current trading is in line with company expectations, and first-half revenue is higher than a year earlier but offset by increasing operating expenses.

In a trading update for the six months to end-September 2011, the water utility ascribed the revenue rise mainly to the effect of inflation.  Operating expenses are expected to rise, principally as a result of higher infrastructure renewals expenditure and depreciation, alongside other inflationary cost pressures.

Regulatory capital investment and depreciation in the second half are expected to exceed those in the first.

United Utilities' financial position remains robust with the group having headroom to cover its projected financing needs into the second half of 2013, it said.

It plans to accelerate approximately £100 million of previously agreed pension deficit payments, providing a higher investment return for the group.

The business remains on track to deliver its outperformance targets.

Quick facts: United Utilities Group PLC

Price: 1012 GBX

Market: LSE
Market Cap: £6.9 billion

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