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Fires and floods are sending some of the nation’s largest utilities to the bond market to cover huge, unexpected bills. California’s PG&E Corp., which was forced into bankruptcy a year ago after its equipment sparked the deadliest wildfire in state history, is seeking permission from the state to issue as much as $7 billion in bonds to cover claims. Meanwhile, North Carolina-based Duke Energy Corp. is putting together a bond deal to pay for almost $1 billion in repairs and other expenses from hurricanes and snowstorms that swept across Florida and the Carolinas.

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