Four of the six power utilities that released their earnings results Tuesday fell into the red for the April-December period due to higher fuel costs for thermal power generation.
Kansai Electric Power Co. reported the biggest group net loss at ¥118.11 billion, the most red ink for the utility for a nine-month period since it started releasing earnings on a quarterly basis in fiscal 2003.
The utility attributed its loss to surging fuel costs after all of its nuclear reactors except one at its Takahama plant in Fukui Prefecture went offline for maintenance and inspections.
Chubu Electric Power Co. posted a group net loss of ¥70.76 billion, compared with a profit of ¥100.09 billion a year earlier, following the government’s order to shut down all of the reactors at its Hamaoka plant in Shizuoka Prefecture due to concerns that a powerful earthquake could hit the area.
It is the first time in three years that the utility posted a group net loss for the nine-month period.
Hokuriku Electric Power Co. incurred a group net loss of ¥3.01 billion, while Chugoku Electric Power Co. logged a group net loss of ¥420 million.
Only three of Japan’s 54 commercial reactors are operational and the prospects for firing any others back up are unclear amid heightened the safety concerns about nuclear power due to the crisis in Fukushima.
Earnings for the two utilities that stayed in the black for the April-December period were also weighed down by the surging fuel costs.
Shikoku Electric Power Co. said its group net profit fell 56.2 percent from a year earlier to ¥8.16 billion, while Okinawa Electric Power Co., which has no nuclear plants, reported a 14.9 percent fall to ¥8.27 billion.
Kansai Electric, Hokuriku Electric, Chugoku Electric and Shikoku Electric withheld their net profit projections for the whole of fiscal 2011, which ends in March, saying they can’t predict when their reactors will be restarted.