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Any idea how much the sale of the coal plants is going to reflect on Earnings this year.

This much I know - it is a "forced sales" as part of the condition for the merger. Probably due to regulatory competition rules etc.
Coal and coal assets are cheap now, hard to get 50% on the dollar for book value.
Some of the bigger players cannot bid on them, further driving the price down to a potential 30% of book value (also due to regulatory commission mandates stemming from the merger.)

So, given that EXC did not pay a bargain price for the acquisition, how is the event likely to impact earnings this year?

Further, am I right to assume this will actually be a positive for EXC going down the road, especially if more restrictions are put on coal plants?...

I believe the dividend is safe, and imho the downside on this company is not large (barring an unforeseen nuclear event, of course.)
The counterpoint is that the upside may be small also, unless the economy goes into overdrive.
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