Progress ‘hopeful’ FERC will approve Duke takeover by June 8

Progress Energy Inc. chief executive officer said he’s “hopeful” the proposed $17.6 billion takeover by Duke Energy Corp. will receive final regulatory approval this week, creating the largest U.S. utility owner.

The companies are intensifying their plans for integrating the two companies, Bill Johnson, who would become CEO of the combined company, said in an interview at an industry conference in Orlando, Florida, today.

The deal, announced almost 17 months ago, remains compelling, Johnson said. Charlotte, North Carolina-based Duke has promised rate cuts to state regulators and proposed spending an additional $110 million on power lines to ease federal anti- competition concerns.

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