Shares of Utilities Slide After Ike Cuts Power

Shares of most utilities dropped Monday morning after Hurricane Ike ripped through southern Texas, widely disrupting power, and the broader markets tumbled on concern about the financial sector.

Ike slammed into Galveston, Texas, early Saturday with sustained winds of about 110 mph, tearing through homes, streets and public infrastructures. Two million people remain without power in Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana as of Monday.


New Orleans-based Entergy Corp. said the storm caused outages for 99 percent of customers of its Texas subsidiary, the most in the company's history.The company is also working to restore power in Arkansas, and is working to supply power to more than 500,000 customers throughout the region.Shares of Entergy fell $2.65, or 2.6 percent, to $97.95.

Georgia Power is sending 700 employees and contract workers to Texas to assist in the restoration of electricity in Ike's wake.

Shares of Houston-based Dynegy , which supplies power mostly in the Midwest, Northeast and West Coast, fell $36 cents, or 7.6 percent, to $4.38. Earlier shares set a year low of $4.33.

Shares of Constellation Energy Group , based in Baltimore, fell $3.18, or 5.5 percent, to $55.20 rebounding from a year low of $54.62.

Shares of New York-based Consolidated Edison were among the biggest gainers, adding 41 cents to $43.99.

Meanwhile on Wall Street, investors were facing a financial storm of their own after Lehman Brothers filed for Chapter 11 protection and Merrill Lynch sold itself to Bank of America .