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Oct 31, 2008

ALLETE reports third quarter results;reaffirms 2008 earnings guidance

ALLETE reports third quarter results;
reaffirms 2008 earnings guidance

DULUTH, Minn. -- ALLETE (NYSE: ALE) today reported third quarter 2008 earnings of 85 cents per share, compared with 58 cents in the same period a year ago.

Third quarter 2008 net income was $24.7 million on revenue of $201.7 million. In the comparable period a year ago, ALLETE recorded net income of $16.5 million and revenue of $200.8 million.

"We remain on track to meet our full-year earnings targets," said ALLETE Chairman, President and CEO Don Shippar. "We expect year-end earnings to be within the range of $2.70 to $2.90 per share."

Net income from ALLETE's Regulated Utility segment was $16.7 million, compared to $13 million in the third quarter of 2007. The quarterly results reflected the first electric base rate increases since 1994, which are intended to recover increased expenses, including those related to capital expenditures.

Earnings on ALLETE's investment in the American Transmission Company improved due to a growing investment balance, and ALLETE's Real Estate business was profitable despite an extremely difficult market environment.

Quarterly results for ALLETE's "other" segment included $4.4 million, or 15 cents per share, related to the positive resolution of two outstanding tax issues.

Shippar said that the company's balance sheet is solid and ALLETE has sufficient capital availability through the immediate term. "Our strong liquidity position will allow Minnesota Power to continue making significant capital investments in emission reductions and renewable energy initiatives."

ALLETE's corporate headquarters are located in Duluth, Minnesota More information about the company is available on ALLETE's Web site, www.allete.com.

The statements contained in this release and statements that ALLETE may make orally in connection with this release that are not historical facts, are forward-looking statements. Actual results may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties and investors are directed to the risks discussed in documents filed by ALLETE with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Investor Contact:
Tim Thorp