Rumors of their struggling are greatly exaggerated:
In June, we completed our $1.5 billion accelerated stock repurchase ahead of schedule. Further, last month we announced that the Board of Directors increased the quarterly dividend to $0.825 per share, doubling the annual growth rate to around 4 percent. This increase reflects our confidence in the strength of our core business and our cash flows.
Our balance sheet provides continued support for growth in the dividend. For the past 89 years, the dividend has demonstrated our commitment to delivering attractive total returns to shareholders.
Unless I'm mistaken, that stock repurchase was not financed or leveraged, it was the expenditure of liquid assets. Why is that important? Because with a corporation as large as Duke is, spending those big piles of cash is just as important as bringing them in. And when Duke isn't buying up their own stock to artificially enhance its value, they're buying up generation facilities of other companies, to increase their holdings: