Columbia Energy Group, a Herndon-based producer and distributor of natural gas and other energy products, said its third-quarter loss would be $22.7 million, rather than the $9.7 million loss reported last month, because it now expects to lose money on the planned sale of its trading and wholesale marketing operations.
Initially, the company had hoped at least to break even on the sale. But after evaluating several competing purchase offers, it now expects to record a $13 million loss from the sale, which is expected to occur before April 2000. The company also will record a $10.5 million loss in the quarter because of restructuring charges tied to the sale.
As previously reported, income from continuing businesses declined to $800,000, from $12.2 million in the third quarter of 1998, in part because of legal fees and other costs of resisting an unsolicited tender offer from NiSource Inc., an Indiana energy company.
* Criimi Mae Inc., a Rockville commercial mortgage company that is undergoing a Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, reported third-quarter results that included declines in interest income--its main revenue source--and a $36.3 million loss on the sale of securities.
Criimi Mae reports results under two accounting systems, and because it treated that securities-sale loss differently in the two, one of its bottom lines showed a loss and the other a profit.
Under tax-basis accounting, the company lost $17.8 million in the quarter, compared with a gain of $19.9 million (41 cents a share) in the same quarter last year. Interest income was $69 million, down 4 percent from $71.9 million as the company cut back its holdings. Before its bankruptcy filing, this was the system the company said best reflected its results.
Under the other system, called generally accepted accounting principles, the company had a profit of $8.1 million versus a loss of $8.7 million a year ago. Interest income was $55.4 million, down 5 percent from $58.4 million.