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Consolidated Edison, Inc. Reports Year-End 2000 Earnings - Jan 18, 2001
Consolidated Edison, Inc. [NYSE: ED] today (THURSDAY, JANUARY 18, 2001) reported year 2000 net income for common stock from ongoing operations of $686.1 million or $3.24 a share, compared with earnings of $700.6 million or $3.14 a share for 1999. Earnings for 2000 were $601.6 million, or $2.84 a share, after reflecting a non-recurring charge of approximately $0.40 a share for the possible disallowance of replacement power costs for the company's nuclear plant, which returned to service earlier this month following installation of new steam generators.

The company also declared a quarterly dividend of 55 cents a share on its common stock, payable March 15, 2001 to stockholders of record as of February 14, 2001, an annualized increase of 2 cents over the previous annual dividend of $2.18 a share.

"Con Edison has started the new millennium with a solid performance, benefiting from a surging local economy that positions us well for future growth," said Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Eugene R. McGrath. "Today's dividend action continues our record of increasing dividends each year for more than a quarter of a century, a reflection of our commitment to shareholder value."

"We are particularly pleased to report a positive contribution to earnings in 2000 by our unregulated businesses, an important milestone as our industry restructures," said Mr. McGrath. "A number of other significant events also occurred in 2000 that improved the company's position for the future. Con Edison of New York agreed to sell our nuclear plant and related assets for $602 million and 9.2 acres of property on First Avenue in Manhattan, for an expected price of $576 million to $680 million, depending on zoning. In addition, we worked with the New York State Public Service Commission and others to establish new electric, gas and steam agreements for Con Edison of New York that provide important elements of regulatory stability and continue the rate provisions that allow for the timely recovery of purchased power and gas costs from our customers."

For the fourth quarter of 2000, the company's net income for common stock from ongoing operations was $111.4 million or $0.53 a share, compared with $121.6 million or $0.58 a share for the fourth quarter of 1999. After including a non-recurring charge of approximately $0.22 a share for the possible disallowance of replacement power costs, earnings for the fourth quarter were $64.9 million, or $0.31 a share.

The company's earnings for the year 2000 also reflect electric rate reductions for Con Edison of New York effective April 1 and October 1, in accordance with the company's 1997 and 2000 regulatory agreements. These reductions were offset by higher sales, increased pension credits and lower operating costs, reflecting continued emphasis on cost control and technology-driven productivity improvements. Excluding the effects of weather, electric sales for Con Edison of New York increased by 3.6 percent for the year 2000, when compared to the prior year.

Results for the quarter and year-to-date also reflect the impact of the company's repurchases of its common stock. Through December 31, 2000, the company had repurchased 23.2 million shares for $1.0 billion.

The company expects that its earnings for the year 2001 will be in the range of $3.20 to $3.30 a share, exclusive of any impact of the Northeast Utilities merger. This projection is a forward-looking statement of future expectations. Actual results might differ materially from those projected because of factors such as those identified in reports the company has filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Consolidated Edison, Inc. is one of the nation's largest investor-owned energy companies, with more than $9 billion in annual revenues and $16 billion in assets. The company provides a wide range of energy-related products and services to its customers through its six subsidiaries: Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc., a regulated utility providing electric, gas and steam service to New York City and Westchester County, New York; Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc., a regulated utility serving customers in a 1,350 square mile area in southeastern New York State, as well as adjacent sections of northern New Jersey and northeastern Pennsylvania; Con Edison Solutions, a retail energy services company; Con Edison Energy, a wholesale energy supply company; Con Edison Development, an infrastructure development company; and Con Edison Communications, a telecommunications infrastructure company.

For additional financial, operations and customer service information, visit the Consolidated Edison, Inc. web site at www.conedison.com.

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