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AP Business Writer

RALEIGH, NC (AP) — The man unexpectedly appointed as Duke Energy’s CEO says the executive who was supposed to hold the top job was dumped minutes after creating the United States’ largest electric company.

Progress Energy CEO Bill Johnson had been designated to head the expanded company, but it was Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers who ended up getting the job.

Rogers testified Tuesday before the North Carolina Utilities Commission, which is investigating the last-minute switch. Rogers says corporate directors asked him more than a week before the deal closed whether he’d consider staying on as CEO but nothing was final until the merger closed.

He said directors told him they were disappointed in Johnson’s authoritarian-like style, ongoing problems with Progress Energy’s closed Florida nuclear plant, and disappointing financial performance at Progress.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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