Cleco Corp. : Cleco Corporation ends second quarter with operational earnings of $0.62 per diluted share

Cleco Corp. : Cleco Corporation ends second quarter with operational earnings
                          of $0.62 per diluted share

  *Receives state regulatory approval to join MISO
  *Affirms 2013 earnings guidance of $2.45 to $2.55 per diluted share

PINEVILLE, La., July 31, 2013 - Cleco Corporation (NYSE: CNL) posted 2013
second-quarter operational earnings of $37.4 million, or $0.62 per share, down
from $39.4 million, or $0.64 per diluted share recorded in the second quarter
of 2012. Operational earnings exclude amounts for underlying indemnifications
and other nonoperational adjustments. Generally accepted accounting principles
(GAAP) earnings for the second quarter of 2013 were $42.0 million, or $0.69
per diluted share, down from $46.7 million, or $0.77 per diluted share
recorded in the second quarter of 2012.

"In the second quarter, we experienced slightly milder weather compared to
last year but saw revenues increase through expected rate adjustments in our
formula rate plan and through increased transmission revenues associated with
our recently completed transmission rate case," said Bruce Williamson,
president and CEO of Cleco Corporation. "While we continued our management of
controllable operating expenses, planned outages at our regulated generation
facilities during the second quarter increased overall operating expenses and
reduced operating earnings for the quarter.

"On a strategic front, we received approval from the Louisiana Public Service
Commission to join the Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc. (MISO),
which provides growth possibilities through wholesale contracts and
transmission and generation expansion," said Williamson. "In addition to MISO,
we are progressing on our other key regulatory initiatives with filings made
early in the second quarter regarding the transfer of Coughlin into Cleco
Power and an extension to our formula rate plan.

"We are confident in our ability to manage costs and efficiently operate our
utility; therefore, we are affirming our current earnings guidance range of
$2.45 to $2.55 per diluted share for 2013," said Williamson. "We are focused
on growing our company through Cleco Power, which provides low-risk earnings
growth for our shareholders. This guidance assumes normal weather for the
remainder of the year, minimal earnings contribution from Midstream and
excludes non-operational adjustments."

     Consolidated Earnings - Reconciliation of GAAP to Non-GAAP Measures
                                             Diluted Earnings Per Share
                                      For the three months  For the six months
                                         ended June 30        ended June 30
Subsidiary                               2013       2012      2013      2012
Cleco Power LLC                           $0.57     $0.60      $1.03    $1.06
Cleco Midstream Resources LLC              0.03    (0.01)       0.01   (0.06)
Corporate and Other                        0.02      0.05       0.02     0.07
Operational diluted earnings per
share (Non-GAAP)                           0.62      0.64       1.06     1.07
Adjustments^1                              0.07      0.13       0.08     0.20
Diluted earnings per share applicable
to common stock                           $0.69     $0.77      $1.14    $1.27

^1 Refer to "Operational Earnings Adjustments" in this news release

Quarter-Over-Quarter Operational Diluted Earnings Per Share Reconciliation:

   $0.64    2012 second-quarter operational diluted earnings per share
    0.05    Non-fuel revenue
  (0.10)   Other expenses, net
  (0.01)   AFUDC (allowance for funds used during construction)
    0.03   Income taxes
 $(0.03)    Cleco Power results
    0.04    Cleco Midstream results
  (0.03)    Corporate and Other results
   $0.62    2013 second-quarter operational diluted earnings per share
    0.07    Adjustments^1
   $0.69    2013 second-quarter reported GAAP diluted earnings per share

^1Refer to "Operational Earnings Adjustments" in this news release

Cleco Power

  *Higher non-fuel revenue increased earnings by $0.05 per share compared to
    the second quarter of 2012 primarily due to $0.04 per share from
    adjustments to Cleco Power's formula rate plan. Also contributing to this
    increase was $0.01 per share of higher transmission and other revenue.

  *Higher other expenses, net, decreased earnings by $0.10 per share compared
    to the second quarter of 2012 primarily due to $0.04 per share from higher
    generation expenses relating to outages, $0.04 per share from higher
    consulting expenses, higher property taxes, and higher other miscellaneous
    expenses, and $0.02 per share of higher depreciation expense.

  *Lower AFUDC decreased earnings by $0.01 per share compared to the second
    quarter of 2012 primarily due to the timing of capital expenditures
    relating to transmission projects. 

  *Lower income taxes increased earnings by $0.03 per share compared to the
    second quarter of 2012 primarily due to the adjustment to record tax
    expense at the projected annual effective tax rate.

Cleco Midstream Resources

  *Midstream's results increased earnings by $0.04 per share compared to the
    second quarter of 2012 primarily due to $0.03 per share of higher tolling
    revenue and $0.02 per share of lower maintenance expenses at Evangeline.
    These amounts were partially offset by $0.01 per share of higher interest
    charges primarily related to uncertain tax positions.

For a discussion of other transactions affecting Cleco Midstream's results,
please refer to "Operational Earnings Adjustments - Acadia Units 1 and 2
Indemnifications" below.

Corporate and Other

  *Higher income taxes decreased earnings by $0.03 per share compared to the
    second quarter of 2012 primarily due to $0.03 per share for the adjustment
    to record tax expense at the consolidated projected annual effective tax
    rate and $0.01 per share for tax credits. These amounts were partially
    offset by $0.01 per share for permanent tax deductions.

Year-Over-Year Operational Diluted Earnings Per Share Reconciliation:

              Six months ended June 30, 2012, operational diluted earnings per
   $1.07    share
    0.14      Non-fuel revenue
  (0.02)     Rate refund accrual
  (0.13)     Other expenses, net
  (0.03)     Interest charges
  (0.01)     AFUDC
    0.02     Income taxes
 $(0.03)      Cleco Power results
    0.07      Cleco Midstream results
  (0.05)      Corporate and Other results
              Six months ended June 30, 2013, operational diluted earnings per
   $1.06      share
    0.08      Adjustments^1
              Six months ended June 30, 2013, reported GAAP diluted earnings
   $1.14      per share

^1Refer to "Operational Earnings Adjustments" in this news release

Cleco Power

  *Higher non-fuel revenue increased earnings by $0.14 per share compared to
    the first six months of 2012 primarily due to $0.08 per share from
    adjustments to Cleco Power's formula rate plan, $0.05 per share from
    increased sales due primarily to weather, and $0.03 per share from higher
    transmission revenue. Partially offsetting these increases were $0.01 per
    share from lower mineral lease payments and $0.01 per share from other
    revenue.

  *Higher rate refund accrual decreased earnings by $0.02 per share compared
    to the first six months of 2012 primarily due to the absence of the
    reversals of the 2012 cycle accrual and fuel audit reserves.

  *Higher other expenses, net, decreased earnings by $0.13 per share compared
    to the first six months of 2012 primarily due to $0.05 per share of higher
    depreciation expense, $0.03 per share of higher generation maintenance
    expenses primarily related to outages, $0.03 per share of higher property
    taxes, $0.01 per share of higher consulting expenses, and $0.01 per share
    of higher other miscellaneous expenses. 

  *Higher interest charges decreased earnings by $0.03 per share compared to
    the first six months of 2012 primarily due to $0.05 per share from the
    absence of a favorable adjustment related to a tax settlement in 2012,
    partially offset by $0.01 per share related to reacquired debt and $0.01
    per share related to the retirement of pollution control bonds.

  *Lower AFUDC decreased earnings by $0.01 per share compared to the first
    six months of 2012 primarily due to the timing of capital expenditures
    relating to transmission projects.

  *Lower income taxes increased earnings by $0.02 per share compared to the
    first six months of 2012 primarily due to $0.03 per share for the
    adjustment to record tax expense at the projected annual effective tax
    rate and $0.02 per share for settlements with taxing authorities,
    partially offset by $0.02 per share for permanent tax deductions and $0.01
    per share for the flowthrough of tax benefits.

Cleco Midstream Resources

  *Midstream's results increased earnings by $0.07 per share compared to the
    first six months of 2012 primarily due to higher tolling revenue due to
    the power purchase agreement with Cleco Power beginning May 2012 and the
    absence of availability penalties from 2012.

For a discussion of other transactions affecting Cleco Midstream's results,
please refer to "Operational Earnings Adjustments - Acadia Units 1 and 2
Indemnifications" below.

Corporate and Other

  *Higher income taxes decreased earnings by $0.05 per share compared to the
    first six months of 2012 primarily due to $0.03 per share for the
    adjustment to record tax expense at the consolidated projected annual
    effective tax rate and $0.02 per share for tax credits.

Operational Earnings Adjustments:

Cleco's management uses operational earnings per share, which is a non-GAAP
measure, to evaluate the operations of Cleco and establish goals for
management and employees. Management believes this presentation is
appropriate and enables investors to more accurately compare Cleco's
operational financial performance over the periods presented. Operational
diluted earnings as presented here may not be comparable to similarly titled
measures used by other companies. The following table provides a
reconciliation of operational diluted earnings per share to reported GAAP
diluted earnings per share.

  Reconciliation of Operational Diluted Earnings Per Share to Reported GAAP
                          Diluted Earnings Per Share

                                             Diluted Earnings Per Share
                                      For the three months  For the six months
                                         ended June 30        ended June 30
                                         2013       2012      2013      2012
Operational diluted earnings per
share                                     $0.62     $0.64      $1.06    $1.07
Life insurance policies                       -         -       0.01     0.01
Tax levelization                              -      0.01          -        -
Acadia Unit 1 indemnifications                -         -          -     0.07
Acadia Unit 2 indemnifications             0.07      0.12       0.07     0.12
Reported GAAP diluted earnings per
share applicable to common stock          $0.69     $0.77      $1.14    $1.27

Reconciling adjustments from operational diluted earnings per share to GAAP
diluted earnings per share are as follows:

Life Insurance Policies

Cleco has life insurance policies covering certain members of management.
These policies have a cash surrender value component that is carried as an
asset and adjusted due to market changes, premium payments, or policy
redemptions. Cleco is unable to predict market changes and cash surrender
value amounts of these policies, and management does not consider these
adjustments to be a component of operational earnings. 

Tax Levelization

GAAP requires companies to apply an effective tax rate to interim periods that
is consistent with the company's estimated annual effective tax rate. As a
result, on a quarterly basis, Cleco projects the annual effective tax rate and
then adjusts the tax expense recorded in that quarter to reflect the projected
annual effective tax rate. During the second quarter of 2012, Cleco recorded
a $0.01 per share benefit from the levelization of its annual tax rate to
bring the actual tax rate in line with the projected annual effective tax
rate. The resulting adjustment for this item had no impact for the second
quarter of 2013. The incremental adjustment for tax levelization is not
related to the current quarter's operational earnings because it reflects the
effect of the change in tax rates on operational earnings for the prior
quarter.

Acadia Units 1 and 2 Indemnifications

Acadia Power Partners, LLC provided limited guarantees and indemnifications to
Cleco Power and Entergy Louisiana when they acquired Acadia Units 1 and 2 in
February 2010 and April 2011, respectively. Acadia Power Partners, LLC and
Acadia Power Holdings will reduce the indemnification liabilities either
through expiration of the contractual life or through changes in the
probability of a claim arising. During the second quarters of 2013 and 2012,
the contractual expiration of the underlying indemnifications increased
earnings $0.07 and $0.12 per share, respectively. The resulting adjustment
for this item for the six months ended June 30, 2013 and 2012, increased
earnings by $0.07 and $0.19 per share, respectively. 

Cleco management will discuss the company's second-quarter 2013 results during
a conference call scheduled for 7:30 a.m. Central time (8:30 a.m. Eastern
time) Thursday, August 1, 2013. The call will be webcast live on the
internet. A replay will be available for 12 months. Investors may access the
webcast through the company's website at www.cleco.com by selecting "Investor
Relations" and then "Q2 2013 Cleco Corporation Earnings Conference Call."

Please note: In addition to historical financial information, this news
release contains forward-looking statements about future results and
circumstances. There are many risks and uncertainties with respect to such
forward-looking statements, including the weather and other natural phenomena,
state and federal legislative and regulatory initiatives, the timing and
extent of changes in commodity prices and interest rates, the operating
performance of Cleco Power's and Cleco Midstream's facilities, the impact of
the global economic environment, and other risks and uncertainties more fully
described in the company's latest Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly
Reports on Form 10-Q. Actual results may differ materially from those
indicated in such forward-looking statements.

Cleco Corporation is a regional energy company headquartered in Pineville, La.
Cleco owns a regulated electric utility company, Cleco Power LLC, which owns 9
generating units with a total nameplate capacity of 2,565 megawatts and serves
approximately 283,000 customers in Louisiana through its retail business and
10 communities across Louisiana and Mississippi through wholesale power
contracts. Cleco also owns a wholesale energy business, Cleco Midstream
Resources LLC, which owns two generating units with a total nameplate capacity
of 775 megawatts. For more information about Cleco, visit www.cleco.com.

Analyst Contact:
Tom Miller
(318) 484-7642
Media Contact:
Robbyn Cooper
(318) 484-7136

                                For the three months ended June 30
(Unaudited)               (million kWh)             (thousands)
                       2013    2012   Change      2013        2012     Change
Electric Sales
Residential             801     848   (5.5)%     $64,815     $66,150   (2.0)%
Commercial              632     667   (5.2)%      44,679      44,317     0.8%
Industrial              575     578   (0.5)%      22,061      21,132     4.4%
Other retail             33      33       -%       2,494       2,407     3.6%
Surcharge                 -       -       -%       2,054       2,036     0.9%
Other                     -       -       -%     (1,566)     (1,566)       -%
Total retail          2,041   2,126   (4.0)%     134,537     134,476       -%
Sales for resale        498     466     6.9%      13,299      11,710    13.6%
Unbilled                215     168    28.0%      12,195      10,006    21.9%
Total retail and
wholesale
customer sales        2,754   2,760   (0.2)%    $160,031    $156,192     2.5%

                                 For the six months ended June 30
(Unaudited)              (million kWh)             (thousands)
                      2013    2012   Change        2013        2012    Change
Electric Sales
Residential          1,642   1,632     0.6%    $126,515    $122,540      3.2%
Commercial           1,214   1,237   (1.9)%      88,728      86,064      3.1%
Industrial           1,130   1,128     0.2%      43,186      41,224      4.8%
Other retail            65      65       -%       5,061       4,767      6.2%
Surcharge                -       -       -%       4,291       4,851   (11.5)%
Other                    -       -       -%     (3,131)     (3,120)    (0.4)%
Total retail         4,051   4,062   (0.3)%     264,650     256,326      3.2%
Sales for resale       939     856     9.7%      25,577      23,495      8.9%
Unbilled               152      80    90.0%       8,007       5,703     40.4%
Total retail and
wholesale
customer sales       5,142   4,998     2.9%    $298,234    $285,524      4.5%

                              CLECO CORPORATION
                 CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME
               (Thousands, except share and per share amounts)
                                 (Unaudited)
For the three months ended June 30                       2013         2012
Operating revenue
Electric operations                                     $252,765     $228,293
Other operations                                          11,531       12,111
Gross operating revenue                                  264,296      240,404
Electric customer credits                                  (402)        (281)
Operating revenue, net                                   263,894      240,123
Operating expenses
Fuel used for electric generation                         72,611       54,999
Power purchased for utility customers                     13,940       16,068
Other operations                                          31,442       28,688
Maintenance                                               26,310       24,184
Depreciation                                              34,740       32,250
Taxes other than income taxes                             10,285        9,713
Gain on sale of assets                                     (188)         (22)
Total operating expenses                                 189,140      165,880
Operating income                                          74,754       74,243
Interest income                                              257          (3)
Allowance for other funds used during construction           413        1,399
Other income                                               8,165       13,014
Other expense                                            (1,247)        (831)
Interest charges
Interest charges, including amortization of debt
expense and premium, net                                  21,017       21,094
Allowance for borrowed funds used during construction      (129)        (478)
Total interest charges                                    20,888       20,616
Income before income taxes                                61,454       67,206
Federal and state income tax expense                      19,422       20,520
Net income applicable to common stock                    $42,032      $46,686
Average number of basic common shares outstanding     60,445,617   60,421,028
Average number of diluted common shares outstanding   60,713,374   60,660,702
Basic earnings per share
Net income applicable to common stock                      $0.70        $0.77
Diluted earnings per share
Net income applicable to common stock                      $0.69        $0.77
Cash dividends paid per share of common stock            $0.3625      $0.3125

                              CLECO CORPORATION
                 CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME
               (Thousands, except share and per share amounts)
                                 (Unaudited)
For the six months ended June 30                         2013         2012
Operating revenue
Electric operations                                     $482,191     $437,883
Other operations                                          23,074       23,056
Gross operating revenue                                  505,265      460,939
Electric customer credits                                  (424)        1,955
Operating revenue, net                                   504,841      462,894
Operating expenses
Fuel used for electric generation                        157,976      128,063
Power purchased for utility customers                     18,796       24,705
Other operations                                          58,363       56,385
Maintenance                                               43,944       41,419
Depreciation                                              68,773       64,097
Taxes other than income taxes                             22,919       19,743
Loss (gain) on sale of assets                                846         (55)
Total operating expenses                                 371,617      334,357
Operating income                                         133,224      128,537
Interest income                                              457           31
Allowance for other funds used during construction         1,577        2,416
Equity income from investees, before tax                       -            1
Other income                                              10,438       22,389
Other expense                                            (1,683)      (1,486)
Interest charges
Interest charges, including amortization of debt
expense and premium, net                                  42,848       42,062
Allowance for borrowed funds used during construction      (504)        (822)
Total interest charges                                    42,344       41,240
Income before income taxes                               101,669      110,648
Federal and state income tax expense                      32,503       33,930
Net income applicable to common stock                    $69,166      $76,718
Average number of basic common shares outstanding     60,419,588   60,387,388
Average number of diluted common shares outstanding   60,670,112   60,625,377
Basic earnings per share
Net income applicable to common stock                      $1.15        $1.27
Diluted earnings per share
Net income applicable to common stock                      $1.14        $1.27
Cash dividends paid per share of common stock              $0.70       $0.625

                              CLECO CORPORATION
                    CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
                                 (Thousands)
                                 (Unaudited)
                                           At June 30, 2013  At Dec. 31, 2012
Assets
Current assets
Cash and cash equivalents                          $7,567           $31,020
Accounts receivable, net                           89,425            77,034
Other current assets                              288,943           339,284
Total current assets                              385,935           447,338
Property, plant and equipment, net              3,042,221         3,009,461
Equity investment in investees                     14,541            14,540
Prepayments, deferred charges and other           673,439           676,010
Total assets                                   $4,116,136        $4,147,349
Liabilities
Current liabilities
Short-term debt                                    $3,000                $-
Long-term debt due within one year                 16,658            91,140
Accounts payable                                   93,981           102,695
Other current liabilities                         120,177           100,795
Total current liabilities                         233,816           294,630
Deferred credits                                1,027,221         1,096,248
Long-term debt, net                             1,323,765         1,257,258
Total liabilities                               2,584,802         2,648,136
Shareholders' equity
Common shareholders' equity                     1,561,209         1,531,583
Accumulated other comprehensive loss             (29,875)          (32,370)
Total shareholders' equity                      1,531,334         1,499,213
Total liabilities and shareholders' equity     $4,116,136        $4,147,349

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Source: Cleco Corp. via Thomson Reuters ONE
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