WGL Holdings Inc., the parent company of Washington Gas Light Co., said the seasonal loss in its fourth quarter shrank because of it non-utility operations.

The loss for the quarter ended Sept. 30 was $22.7 million (47 cents per share), compared with a loss of $23.2 million in the year-earlier quarter. The company's fiscal year also ended Sept. 30, and it typically loses money in the fourth quarter because of low demand for natural gas in home heating.

In the quarter, WGL phased out its investment in a residential heating and air-conditioning business and took a one-time gain that was largely responsible for the company's narrower fourth-quarter loss. Regulated gas-utility revenue was $115.4 million in the quarter, down from $118.6 million a year earlier.

For the full year, WGL earned $39.1 million (80 cents), compared with $82.4 million ($1.75) in 2001. Utility revenue was $925.1 million, compared with $1.45 billion in 2001, reflecting warmer weather this year. The most recent annual results also included charges for losses on its residential heating and air-conditioning business, as well as losses from an inactive consumer finance subsidiary.