LONDON -- United Utilities Group (LSE: UU.L ) , which provides water and sewage services to around 7 million people in northwest England, issued a trading update for the six months ending Sept. 30 this morning. While its share price has currently slipped close to 1%, it remains within striking distance of recent highs.
The group expects to deliver a good underlying performance for the full year, with higher revenue coming from the regulated price increase for 2012-2013. But the increase will be lower than is allowed, owing to the impact of customers switching to metered supplies and the sustained reduction in commercial volumes.
Borrowing for the half year to March 2013 will be higher than at March 2012, mainly because of the expense of the regulatory capital investment program, payment of the final dividend for 2011-2012 and costs of pensions, interest, and tax. But gearing will remain in the middle of Ofwat's assumed range of 55%-65% net debt to regulatory capital value.
United Utilities will issue its half-year results on Nov. 28.
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