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Duke Energy Posts Lower Profit After Spinoff

Power company Duke Energy said on Tuesday second-quarter earnings fell after the company spun off its natural gas operations earlier this year.

Duke Energy, which merged with peer Cinergy in April of last year, posted net income of $293 million, or 23 per share, compared with $355 million, or 28 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding special items and the impact of the Spectra Energy spin-off, earnings per share were 24 cents.

Analysts on average had expected the company to report 20 cents per share, according to Reuters Estimates.

Duke shares have fallen about 6.5% after spinning off its natural gas business in January, underperforming the utility industry this year. The broader Standard and Poor's utility index has gained 6% since Jan 3.

Though still trading at multi-year peaks, the index has dipped in the past two months after hitting an all-time high in May. Utility stocks, often viewed as bond surrogates because of their high dividends, have wobbled due to concerns about rising interest rates.