TVA benefits from lower fuel expense, reduced debt

KNOXVILLE ―The Tennessee Valley Authority reported $5.5 billion in operating revenues for the six-month period ended March 31, 2019, a 3 percent increase from the same period a year ago. 

TVA’s fuel costs were essentially flat – 3 percent lower than the six-month period ended March 31, 2018, due to lower commodity prices and significantly more hydroelectric generation driven by record-setting rainfall this winter. 

“Not only did TVA help prevent approximately $1.6 billion dollars of flood damage earlier this year, we were able to turn much of that rainfall into low-cost, carbon-free energy, providing increased value to those we serve,” said Jeff Lyash, TVA’s president and chief executive officer. “The diversity of TVA’s power system continued to benefit the people of the Tennessee Valley during the second quarter.”

Operating and maintenance expense was up $267 million, or 21 percent higher than the six-month period ended March 31, 2018, primarily due to:

  • $135 million of additional funds for project write-offs and materials and supplies inventory reserves and write-offs related to the anticipated retirement of certain generating units,
  • $108 million of accelerated recovery of deferred environmental costs, and
  • $41 million of increased outage expense due to additional planned nuclear outage days.

Interest expense was down $34 million for the six-month period ended March 31, 2019, or 5 percent lower than the same period a year ago, reflecting a lower overall debt balance.

“We continue to see the benefits of debt reduction in TVA’s financial results,” said John Thomas, TVA’s chief financial officer. “The significant decrease in interest expense in the first half of this fiscal year is a direct result of lower overall debt balances, despite the higher interest rate environment.”

Additional highlights of TVA’s second quarter fiscal year 2019 include:

  • Net income for the six months ended March 31, 2019 was $664 million, down 11 percent from net income of $750 million for the same period of fiscal year 2018.
  • TVA’s economic development efforts continue to attract and encourage the expansion of business in the Tennessee Valley, with over $6.3 billion in investments and more than 46,000 jobs created or retained through the second quarter of 2019.
  • On Jan. 31, 2019, Browns Ferry Unit One became the second unit to produce electricity at full extended power uprate power after Unit Three, which has been operating at higher output levels since July 2018. Unit Two completed its EPU upgrade this spring and is currently undergoing testing and validation.
  • TVA continues to update its Integrated Resource Plan to determine how it can maintain its focus on providing low-cost, reliable energy, supporting environmental stewardship, and spurring economic development in the Tennessee Valley over the next 20 years. TVA provided a draft of its most recent IRP to the public on Feb. 15, 2019.
Selected Financial Data – Six Months Ended March 31
Sales, Revenues & Expenses20192018
Sales (millions of kWh)76,33776,916
Operating Revenues ($ millions)$5,475$5,341
Fuel & Purchased Power Expense1,4941,463
Operating & Maintenance Expense1,5451,278
Interest Expense602636
Net Income$664$750
Net Cash Provided by / (Used in) ($ millions)  
Operating Activities$1,747$1,858
Investing Activities(1,040)(1,141)
Financing Activities(706)192

TVA executive management hosted a conference call to discuss second quarter fiscal year 2019 results at on Thursday, May 2, 2019. The conference call can be accessed from TVA’s website via webcast, at, on the Investor Relations homepage. 

A replay will be available until 9:30 a.m. ET, June 2, 2019, by calling toll free (877) 344-7529 in the United States or (412) 317-0088 outside the United States and using the conference number 10129991. A webcast replay and transcript will also be available for one year on TVA’s website at

TVA’s quarterly report on Form 10-Q provides additional financial, operational, and descriptive information, including unaudited financial statements for the quarter ended March 31, 2019. TVA’s quarterly report and other SEC reports are available without charge on TVA’s website at, on the SEC’s website at, or by calling TVA toll free at (888) 882-4975.          

This release may contain forward-looking statements relating to future events and future performance. Although TVA believes that the assumptions underlying these statements are reasonable, numerous factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Please refer to TVA’s most recent annual report on Form 10-K and quarterly report on Form 10-Q for a discussion of factors that could cause actual results to differ from those in the forward-looking statements.

The Tennessee Valley Authority is a corporate agency of the United States that provides electricity for business customers and local power distributors serving nearly 10 million people in parts of seven southeastern states. TVA receives no taxpayer funding, deriving virtually all of its revenues from sales of electricity. In addition to operating and investing its revenues in its electric system, TVA provides flood control, navigation and land management for the Tennessee River system, and assists local power companies and state and local governments with economic development and job creation.

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