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Entergy swings to loss on write-down, warm winter

NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Entergy lost $152 million in the first quarter as it wrote down the value of a nuclear reactor and a warm winter cut into demand for power.

Entergy announced Thursday it lost 86 cents per share on revenue of $2.38 billion. Last year the company earned $1.38 per share on revenues of $2.54 billion. Adjusting for the write-down and other items, the company earned 44 cents per share. Analysts expected adjusted earnings of 77 cents per share and revenue of $2.36 billion.

Entergy took a $356 million charge in order to write down the value of its Vermont Yankee nuclear plant. Entergy had already partially written down the value of the reactor because the state of Vermont is hoping to shut it down. But a decline in power prices further reduced the expected value of the plant. Entergy still hopes to operate the plant through 2032.

A historically warm winter across the U.S. reduced demand for power, reducing Entergy's sales to its customers. Low natural gas prices also reduced the amount Entergy earned from its wholesale power business.

Entergy Corp. delivers electricity to 2.8 million customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. It is also the nation's second largest nuclear plant operator.