Origin Energy (ASX: ORG) shares were down -16.57% to a new 2-month low of $5.71 after slashing the energy markets earnings forecast for FY22 by a quarter and abandoning its guidance for FY23.
The energy giant revised underlying earnings to be between $310m and $460m – previously $450m-$600m – after warning that material developments in global and Australian energy markets have created a high degree of uncertainty around the range of earnings outcomes for FY23.
Underscoring the earnings downgrade is huge volatility in electricity markets and a litany of coal supply issues at Eraring, Australia's largest coal station, which its plans to shut as soon as mid-2025.
Due to production constraints experienced by the company’s supplier, Centennial Coal, Origin has been exposed to replacement coal purchases at significantly higher prices.
"Despite positioning the year with a relatively low short position across all states, the lower output from Eraring results in a greater exposure to the purchase of electricity at current high spot prices in order to meet customer demand," Origin noted.
While deliveries from Centennial Coal’s Mandalong mine are expected to be interrupted throughout FY22 and into the first half of FY23, equipment supply chain delays – affecting additional supplies by rail - are also expected to impact coal deliveries in FY23.
However, with Origin's gas business on a tear, group underlying earnings are forecast at the mid-point of the original $1.95bn $2.25bn range, with integrated gas earnings expected to between $1.7bn-$1.8bn, up from the original $1.5bn-$1.65bn range.
Origin had previously provided guidance for Energy Markets Underlying earnings for FY23 of $600m – $850m.
However, due to a high degree of uncertainty around the range of earnings outcomes for FY23, Origin has withdrawn all guidance for FY23.
Meantime, management will continue to assess the outlook, and plans to provide an update at full year results in August.
Origin Energy share price: A 12 month snapshot.
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