Cold French winter shores up EDFs' H1 profit

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PARIS (AP) — France's state controlled nuclear power giant EDF says its net profit rose 3.5 percent in the first half as a result of a cold winter and high electricity prices.

The company, which runs all France's 58 nuclear power plants and has a stake in one of the U.S.'s biggest nuclear power companies, made 2.88 billion euros ($3.8 billion) during the period, up from 2.78 billion euros a year earlier.

Profits were driven mainly by its home market, though earnings were solid in Italy and Britain too. EDF owns British Energy, Britain's largest electricity producer. In Italy it owns Edison, the country's second largest electricity producer.

EDF says operating profit should rise "at least" 3 percent this year on an organic basis, excluding Edison, down from 4.6 percent achieved last year.

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