German utility RWE reported strong first half results and announced a special dividend.
The company was boosted by good performance from its supply and trading division along with a $1.9bn payment from the German government.
RWE´s bottom line for the first six months of 2017 benefited from a $1.7bn tax rebate and around $200m in the refund of associated interest charges.
The electricity company said it would use the refund to pay a special dividend of €1 per share, to run alongside an ordinary dividend of €0.50. Some of the funds will also be used to reduce debt.
It follows the German high court´s ruling in June that a tax previously levied on the German nuclear industry was unconstitutional. Germany´s nuclear operators, including RWE, Eon and EnBW, paid €6.3bn as a result of the tax between 2011 and 2016.
The trio were compelled to pay €145 per gramme of the fuel rods used in their nuclear reactors.
RWE chief executive Dr. Rolf Martin Schmitz claimed the utility was on course to deliver earnings at the upper end of its forecasts for the fiscal year. The company has guided earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) to fall in the range of €5.4bn-€5.7bn for 2017.
“The key indicators also demonstrate that our financial situation provides us with a solid foundation for the future. And we made the right decisions in defining our strategy,” said Schmitz.
EBITDA for the first half of the year stood at €3.2bn, a 7% increase on the €3bn registered for the same period of 2016, with all business segments making positive contributions.