The Meridian Energy Ltd (ASX: MEZ) share price is edging lower today, down 2.39% to $4.90 at the time of writing.
Below we take a look at the ASX energy company’s operating update for May.
What did Meridian report?
The Meridian Energy share price is falling today despite the company reporting an uptick in electricity demand and a small increase in its hydro storage levels in New Zealand.
According to today’s release, national hydro storage for the month through to 10 June increased by 3%, from 67% to 70% from the previous month. The South Island is in better shape, with storage increasing to 75% of average, while the North Island’s average remains unchanged at 35%.
New Zealand’s largest sustainable electricity generator reported its May monthly total inflows were 111% of the historical average.
National electricity demand also increased in May 2021, up 3% from May 2020 when much of New Zealand was still under COVID lockdown.
All up, the company reported its New Zealand retail sales volumes in May increased 23.4% year-on-year. Meridian said sales ramped up across all segments, with residential up 5.7%, small medium business up 49.2%, agricultural up 1.4%, large business up 11.1% and corporate sales gaining 33.0% compared to May 2020.
Across the financial year so far, it reported a 14.1% increase in sales volumes compared to the prior corresponding period. Sales increased across all segments, with small medium businesses driving the biggest increase, up 22.2%.
In its Australian operations, Meridian Energy reported Powershop Australia electricity customer connection numbers climbed 0.3% in May. Electricity sales volumes in May increased 6.1% year-on-year. Sales volumes are up 15.7% so far this financial year compared to the same period last year.
Meridian Energy share price snapshot
Meridian Energy shares have gained 8% over the past 12 months, trailing the 28% gains posted by the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO).
Year-to-date, the Meridian Energy share price remains under pressure, down 31% so far in 2021.
Meridian pays a 3.1% dividend yield, unfranked.