The bill collector cometh at Xcel…

October 27, 2008

With the latest round of Qs coming out, we’re starting to see all sorts of new warnings about the current financial mess and the impact this is likely to have on various companies. Take this new one that Xcel (XEL) added in the 10Q it filed on Friday afternoon:

Credit risk includes the risk that our retail customers will not pay their bills, which may lead to a reduction in liquidity and an eventual increase in bad debt. Retail credit risk is comprised of numerous factors including the overall level of economic activity in our various service territories and price of products and services provided.

When the company reported 3rd quarter earnings on Thursday, Chairman and CEO Richard C. Kelly noted in the release that “we believe recently emerging macroeconomic issues are having an adverse impact on our sales growth, particularly, our residential sales.”

How much of a problem will this be for the company? Declining demand combined with a growing number of people not paying their bills makes for a tricky mix. It’s been a long time since I’ve covered utilities, but many states tend to have rules about cutting off service, even for people that aren’t able to pay.

We’ve just posted our first FootnotedPro post on JBLU which is only available to subscribers. For a limited time (while we iron out some kinks) subscriptions to FootnotedPro cost $1,000 for the year or $100 for the month.

Image source: Longjaunt.com

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