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S&P lowers outlook on CenterPoint to stable, citing Enable Midstream stake

S&P Global Ratings revised CenterPoint Energy Inc.'s outlook to stable from positive and affirmed its issuer credit ratings on the company and its subsidiaries at A-.

In deciding to lower CenterPoint's outlook by a notch, the rating agency said the company generally has a stable and low-risk business, but said the outlook reflects the revised base case that CenterPoint will either maintain its interest or gradually reduce its limited partnership interest in higher-volatility Enable Midstream Partners.

"We view the company as consisting of about 50% of lower-risk, regulated electric utility transmission and distribution [T&D] business, [CenterPoint Energy Houston Electric LLC], which serves more than 2.4 million customers. We view about 28% of consolidated CenterPoint as consisting of lower-risk, regulated gas utility distribution businesses that operate across six states and serve more than 3.4 million customers."

CenterPoint recently pulled the plug on a potential sale of its ownership stake in Enable after failing to reach a mutually acceptable agreement.

S&P Global Ratings and S&P Global Market Intelligence are owned by S&P Global Inc.