EVANSVILLE - Evansville-based Vectren Corp. (NYSE: VVC) shareholders have approved a proposed merger with Texas-based CenterPoint Energy Inc. (NYSE: CNP). The $6 billion deal, the utility says, is expected to close no later than the first quarter of next year.

Vectren says nearly 62 percent of shareholders voted in support of the merger. In July, the Federal Trade Commission terminated a customary regulatory waiting period, moving the deal forward. In early August, Vectren reported second quarter net income of $22.2 million, compared to $37.6 million in the same quarter in in 2017. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has received filings on the proposed merger and -- though not an approval requirement -- the utilities have voluntarily provided information to the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission, which will hold a hearing October 17.

The companies have said utility field employees and utility operations will remain based in Evansville upon the merger's completion. The companies currently employ a combined 13,500 workers and have a customer footprint that includes more than 30 states.

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