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Iberdrola Profit Declines 33% as Renewable Power Levies Increase

Feb. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Iberdrola SA, Spain’s largest utility, said fourth-quarter profit dropped 33 percent as levies to fund renewable investments rose and a depressed economy held back power demand.

Net income fell to 297 million euros ($409 million) from 440 million euros a year earlier, the Bilbao-based company said today in a statement. That beat the 293.4 million-euro average estimate of five analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

A sluggish economy in Spain, which last year exited its second recession since 2008, has weighed on power consumption. Iberdrola, whose revenue outlook at home is uncertain as the government reorganizes how it calculates consumer prices, has focused on expansion in Britain, the U.S. and South America.

Full-year net income dropped to 2.57 billion euros from 2.84 billion euros, according to the statement.

Results were hurt by an increase in levies in Spain to 1 billion euros, twice the level of 2012, the company said.

Credit Suisse Group AG said last week it was “cautious” on Iberdrola as 2014 remained “challenging.” The bank has a neutral rating on the company and price estimate of 4.60 euros a share. The stock closed at 4.622 euros yesterday in Madrid.

To contact the reporter on this story: Nidaa Bakhsh in London at nbakhsh@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Will Kennedy at wkennedy3@bloomberg.net

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