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Press release from PR Newswire

ITC Holdings Reports Increased Third Quarter And Year-To-Date 2012 Results; Raises 2012 Operating Earnings Per Share Guidance; Updates 2012 Capital Guidance

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

ITC Holdings Reports Increased Third Quarter And Year-To-Date 2012 Results; Raises 2012 Operating Earnings Per Share Guidance; Updates 2012 Capital Guidance18:44 EDT Tuesday, October 23, 2012NOVI, Mich., Oct. 23, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --HighlightsOperating earnings for the third quarter of $1.07 per diluted common share; reported earnings for the third quarter of $0.98 per diluted common share Operating earnings for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 of $3.05 per diluted common share; reported earnings for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 of $2.68 per diluted common share Capital investments of $626.2 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 2012 operating earnings per share guidance increased to $4.10 to $4.15 per share 2012 capital investment guidance updated to a range of $780 to $825 million(in thousands, except per share data)Three months ended September 30,Nine months endedSeptember 30, 2012201120122011OPERATING REVENUES$214,801$191,303$608,889$555,787REPORTED NET INCOME$51,183$44,024$139,620$129,022OPERATING EARNINGS$55,974$44,024$159,383$129,022REPORTED DILUTED EPS $0.98$0.85$2.68$2.49OPERATING DILUTED EPS$1.07$0.85$3.05$2.49ITC Holdings Corp. (NYSE: ITC) today announced its results for the third quarter and nine month period ended September 30, 2012.  Reported net income for the quarter, measured in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), was $51.2 million, or $0.98 per diluted common share, compared to $44.0 million or $0.85 per diluted common share for the third quarter of 2011.  For the nine months ended September 30, 2012, reported net income was $139.6 million, or $2.68 per diluted common share, compared to $129.0 million, or $2.49 per diluted common share for the same period last year.Operating earnings for the third quarter were $56.0 million, or $1.07 per diluted common share, compared to operating earnings of $44.0 million, or $0.85 per diluted common share for the third quarter of 2011. For the nine months ended September 30, 2012, operating earnings were $159.4 million, or $3.05 per diluted common share, compared to operating earnings of $129.0 million, or $2.49 per diluted common share for the same period last year.  Operating earnings are a non-GAAP measure that exclude the impact of after-tax expenses of approximately: 1) $4.8 million or $0.09 per diluted common share for the third quarter and $11.3 million or $0.21 per diluted common share for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 associated with the Entergy Corporation (Entergy) transaction and 2) $8.4 million or $0.16 per diluted common share for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 associated with the estimated refund liability recorded for certain acquisition accounting adjustments for ITC Midwest, ITCTransmission and METC resulting from the FERC audit order on ITC Midwest issued in May 2012.Operating earnings increased by $12.0 million, or $0.22 per diluted common share, for the third quarter compared to the same period in 2011. For the nine months ended September 30, 2012, operating earnings increased $30.4 million, or $0.56 per diluted common share, compared to the same period last year.  The increases in both periods were largely attributable to higher income associated with increased rate base and AFUDC at our operating companies. For the nine months ended September 30, 2012, this increase was partially offset by lower revenues associated with the final amortization of the ITCTransmission rate freeze revenue deferral which expired in May 2011. ITC invested $626.2 million in capital projects at its operating companies during the first nine months of 2012, including $173.6 million, $113.6 million, $266.1 million and $72.9 million at ITCTransmission, METC, ITC Midwest and ITC Great Plains, respectively."We continued to make great strides against both our stand-alone strategic objectives and the Entergy transaction during the third quarter," said Joseph L. Welch, chairman, president and CEO of ITC.  "Our strong operational and financial performance reinforces our unwavering commitment to execution of our stand-alone plans, which benefit all of our constituents.  In addition, while delivering these results, we also made significant progress during the quarter on advancing the Entergy transaction to a successful close, further demonstrating our ability to effectively balance both of these priorities."EPS and Capital Expenditure Guidance For 2012, ITC is raising its full year operating earnings per share guidance to a range of $4.10 to $4.15, from the previous range of $3.95 to $4.05.  Capital investment guidance for 2012 has been updated to a range of $780 to $825 million, from the prior range of $750 to $820 million.  The updated guidance range includes capital forecasts at our regulated operating subsidiaries of $210 to $220 million, $150 to $160 million, $320 to $335 million and $100 to $110 million for ITCTransmission, METC, ITC Midwest and ITC Great Plains, respectively.Third Quarter 2012 Operating Earnings Financial Results Detail ITC's operating revenues for the third quarter increased to $214.8 million compared to $191.3 million for the third quarter of 2011. This increase was primarily due to higher revenue requirements attributable to a higher rate base at our regulated operating subsidiaries and higher recoverable operating expenses. In addition, regional cost sharing revenues increased due to additional capital projects being placed in-service that have been identified by MISO as eligible for regional cost sharing. Operation and maintenance (O&M) expenses of $31.5 million decreased by $5.8 million compared to the same period in 2011. This decrease was primarily due to a decrease in expenses associated with transmission overhead lines surveys, lower field and site maintenance expenses, lower tower maintenance expenses and lower relay work for certain preventative maintenance activities. These decreases were partially offset by higher vegetation management requirements.General and administrative (G&A) expenses of $20.6 million, which excludes $7.3 million of pre-tax expenses related to the Entergy transaction, were $1.6 million higher compared to the same period in 2011 due primarily to higher labor related expenses and higher professional services.Depreciation and amortization expenses of $27.5 million increased by $3.6 million compared to the same period in 2011 due to a higher depreciable base resulting from property, plant and equipment additions.Taxes other than income taxes of $14.7 million were $2.3 million higher than the same period in 2011. This increase was due to 2011 capital additions at our regulated operating subsidiaries, which are included in the tax base for 2012 personal property taxes.Interest expense of $38.9 million increased by $1.7 million compared to the same period in 2011 due primarily to higher borrowing levels to finance capital investments.The effective income tax rate for the third quarter of 2012 was 35.6 percent, excluding a reduction to income taxes of approximately $2.7 million associated with the Entergy transaction expenses compared to 34.0 percent for the same period last year. Year-To-Date 2012 Financial Results Detail ITC's operating revenues for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 increased to $619.9 million, excluding an $11.0 million reduction in revenues associated with the ITC Midwest FERC audit related refunds recorded for ITCTransmission, METC and ITC Midwest, compared to $555.8 million from the same period last year. This increase was primarily due to higher network revenues attributable to higher rate base at all of our regulated operating subsidiaries and higher recoverable operating expenses. In addition, the increase resulted from higher regional cost sharing revenues primarily due to additional capital projects being placed into service that have been identified by MISO as eligible for regional cost sharing.  Partially offsetting these increases was the impact of the final monthly recognition of the ITCTransmission rate freeze revenue deferral in May 2011.O&M expenses of $90.3 million were $2.2 million lower for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 compared to the same period in 2011. This decrease was primarily a result of lower field and site maintenance expenses, lower relay work for certain preventative maintenance activities, lower substation maintenance expenses, lower tower maintenance expenses and lower expenses associated with transmission overhead lines surveys. These decreases were partially offset by higher vegetation management requirements.G&A expenses of $61.7 million, which excludes $17.1 million of pre-tax expenses related to the Entergy transaction, were $6.8 million higher compared to the same period in 2011. This increase was due to higher labor related expenses and higher general business expenses associated with increased information technology support and higher professional services. The increase was also attributable to the recognition of the Kansas V-Plan Project regulatory asset which reduced expenses in 2011 and did not reoccur in 2012. Depreciation and amortization expenses of $78.5 million increased by $8.1 million for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 compared to the same period in 2011. This increase was primarily due to a higher depreciable base resulting from property, plant and equipment additions.Taxes other than income taxes of $44.2 million were $4.6 million higher compared to the same period in 2011. This increase was due to 2011 capital additions at our regulated operating subsidiaries, which are included in the tax base for 2012 personal property taxes.Interest expense of $115.7 million, which excludes the impact of $1.2 million of interest on the ITC Midwest FERC audit related refund recorded at ITCTransmission, METC and ITC Midwest, increased $5.7 million compared to the same period in 2011 due primarily to higher borrowing levels to finance capital investments. The effective income tax rate for the nine months ended September 30, 2012 was 35.4 percent, excluding a reduction to income taxes of $10.7 million associated with the Entergy transaction and the ITC Midwest FERC audit related refund recorded at ITCTransmission, METC and ITC Midwest, compared to 35.5 percent for the same period in 2011.Third Quarter Conference Call    ITC will also conduct a webcast and conference call at 11 a.m. Eastern on Wednesday, October 24, 2012.  Joseph L. Welch, chairman, president and CEO, will provide a business overview, and Cameron M. Bready, executive vice president and CFO, will discuss the financial results. Individuals wishing to participate in the conference call may dial toll-free (877) 644-1296 (domestic) or (914) 495-8555 (international); there is no passcode.  A listen-only live webcast of the conference call, including accompanying slides and the earnings release, will be available on the company's investor information page.  The conference call replay, available through Monday, October 29, 2012, can be accessed by dialing 855-859-2056 (toll free) or 404-537-3406, passcode 38090652. The webcast will also be archived on the ITC website.Other Available InformationMore detail about the third quarter results may be found in ITC's Form 10-Q filing. Once filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, an electronic copy of our 10-Q can be found at our website, http://investor.itc-holdings.com. Written copies can also be made available by contacting us through our website.About ITC Holdings Corp. ITC Holdings Corp. (NYSE: ITC) is the nation's largest independent electric transmission company. Based in Novi, Michigan, ITC invests in the electric transmission grid to improve reliability, expand access to markets, lower the overall cost of delivered energy and allow new generating resources to interconnect to its transmission systems. ITC's regulated operating subsidiaries include ITCTransmission, Michigan Electric Transmission Company, ITC Midwest and ITC Great Plains. Through these subsidiaries, ITC owns and operates high-voltage transmission facilities in Michigan, Iowa, Minnesota, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma, serving a combined peak load exceeding 26,000 megawatts along 15,000 circuit miles of transmission line. Through ITC Grid Development and its subsidiaries, the company also focuses on expansion in areas where significant transmission system improvements are needed. For more information, please visit ITC's website at www.itc-holdings.com. (itc-ITC)GAAP v. Non-GAAP MeasuresITC's reported earnings are prepared in accordance with GAAP and represent earnings as reported to the Securities and Exchange Commission.  ITC's management believes the company's operating earnings, or GAAP earnings adjusted for specific items as described in the release, provide a more meaningful representation of the company's fundamental earnings power.  However, such measures should not be considered in isolation or as substitutes for results prepared in accordance with GAAP.Safe Harbor Statement This press release contains certain statements that describe our management's beliefs concerning future business conditions, plans and prospects, growth opportunities and the outlook for our business and the electricity transmission industry based upon information currently available. Such statements are "forward-looking" statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Wherever possible, we have identified these forward-looking statements by words such as "will," "may," "anticipates," "believes," "intends," "estimates," "expects," "projects" and similar phrases. These forward-looking statements are based upon assumptions our management believes are reasonable.  Such forward looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties which could cause our actual results, performance and achievements to differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, these statements, including, among others, the risks and uncertainties disclosed in our Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.Because our forward-looking statements are based on estimates and assumptions that are subject to significant business, economic and competitive uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control or are subject to change, actual results could be materially different and any or all of our forward-looking statements may turn out to be wrong.  Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date made and can be affected by assumptions we might make or by known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Many factors mentioned in our discussion in this release and in our annual and quarterly reports will be important in determining future results. Consequently, we cannot assure you that our expectations or forecasts expressed in such forward-looking statements will be achieved. Actual future results may vary materially. Except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to publicly update any of our forward-looking or other statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. ITC HOLDINGS CORP. AND SUBSIDIARIESCONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS (UNAUDITED)Three months endedNine months endedSeptember 30,September 30,(in thousands, except per share data)2012201120122011OPERATING REVENUES$214,801$191,303$608,889$555,787OPERATING EXPENSESOperation and maintenance31,54437,36590,31492,486General and administrative27,90619,04678,79154,915Depreciation and amortization27,46623,89878,45370,338Taxes other than income taxes14,72112,45644,18639,620Other operating (income) and expense ? net(190)(295)(586)(611)Total operating expenses101,44792,470291,158256,748OPERATING INCOME113,35498,833317,731299,039OTHER EXPENSES (INCOME)Interest expense38,92437,248116,918110,002Allowance for equity funds used during construction(5,622)(4,469)(15,800)(12,078)Other income(884)(1,417)(2,171)(2,136)Other expense1,4157932,4733,063Total other expenses (income)33,83332,155101,42098,851INCOME BEFORE INCOME TAXES79,52166,678216,311200,188INCOME TAX PROVISION28,33822,65476,69171,166NET INCOME$51,183$44,024$139,620$129,022Basic earnings per common share $0.99$0.86$2.72$2.52Reported diluted earnings per common share $0.98$0.85$2.68$2.49Operating diluted earnings per common share$1.07$0.85$3.05$2.49Dividends declared per common share$0.3775$0.3525$1.0825$1.0225 RECONCILIATION OF REPORTED NET INCOME (GAAP) TO OPERATING EARNINGS (NON-GAAP MEASURE) - UNAUDITEDThree months endedNine months endedSeptember 30,September 30,2012201120122011Reported net income$51,183$44,024$139,620$129,022Pre-tax Entergy transaction related expenses 7,453N/A17,454N/APre-tax liability for audit related refundN/AN/A13,048N/AIncome taxes on adjustments (2,662)N/A(10,739)N/AOperating earnings$55,974$44,024$159,383$129,022 RECONCILIATION OF REPORTED DILUTED EPS (GAAP) TO OPERATING DILUTED EPS (NON-GAAP MEASURE) - UNAUDITEDThree months endedNine months endedSeptember 30,September 30,2012201120122011Reported diluted EPS$0.98$0.85$2.68$2.49Pre-tax Entergy transaction related expenses 0.14N/A0.33N/APre-tax liability for audit related refund            N/AN/A0.25N/AIncome taxes on adjustments(0.05)N/A(0.21)N/AOperating diluted EPS$1.07$0.85$3.05$2.49 ITC HOLDINGS CORP. AND SUBSIDIARIESCONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF FINANCIAL POSITION  (UNAUDITED)September 30,December 31,(in thousands, except share data)20122011ASSETSCurrent assetsCash and cash equivalents$30,026$58,344Accounts receivable94,86376,895Inventory33,87634,855Deferred income taxes21,04520,636Regulatory assets ? revenue accruals, including accrued interest7,2676,639Prepaid and other current assets9,9354,159Total current assets197,012201,528Property, plant and equipment (net of accumulated depreciation and amortization of $1,248,456 and $1,193,164, respectively)3,967,1903,415,823Other assetsGoodwill950,163950,163Intangible assets ( net of accumulated amortization of $17,607 and $15,276, respectively)45,33446,885Other regulatory assets171,057161,987Deferred financing fees (net of accumulated amortization of $16,949 and $14,594,   respectively)19,59320,989Other30,82325,991Total other assets1,216,9701,206,015TOTAL ASSETS$5,381,172$4,823,366LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITYCurrent liabilitiesAccounts payable102,530136,934Accrued payroll15,72118,013Accrued interest43,39543,642Accrued taxes18,37025,627Regulatory liabilities ? revenue deferrals, including accrued interest51,83646,579Refundable deposits from generators for transmission network upgrades48,04138,805Debt maturing within one year651,897-Other51,0405,867Total current liabilities982,830315,467Accrued pension and postretirement liabilities44,29944,923Deferred income taxes432,677373,268Regulatory liabilities ? revenue deferrals, including accrued interest68,32450,917Regulatory liabilities ? accrued asset removal costs79,49283,934Refundable deposits from generators for transmission network upgrades5,24114,570Other12,42636,373Long-term debt2,406,6742,645,022STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITYCommon stock, without par value, 100,000,000 shares authorized, 51,524,437 and 51,323,368   shares issued and outstanding at September 30, 2012 and December 31, 2011, respectively.955,258943,444Retained earnings414,759330,816Accumulated other comprehensive loss(20,808)(15,368)Total stockholders' equity1,349,2091,258,892TOTAL LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY$5,381,172$4,823,366 ITC HOLDINGS CORP. AND SUBSIDIARIESCONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS (UNAUDITED)Nine months endedSeptember 30,(in thousands)20122011CASH FLOWS FROM OPERATING ACTIVITIESNet income$139,620$129,022Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by operating activities:Depreciation and amortization expense78,45370,338Recognition, refund and collection of revenue accruals and deferrals ? including accrued interest25,74882,854Deferred income tax expense44,92144,894Allowance for equity funds used during construction(15,800)(12,078)Other9,03012,224Changes in assets and liabilities, exclusive of changes shown separately:Accounts receivable(12,182)(14,845)Inventory9791,807Prepaid and other current assets(5,776)(171)Accounts payable(10,637)2,853Accrued payroll(1,865)(3,753)Accrued interest(247)(19,384)Accrued taxes(5,773)(7,315)Other current liabilities11,4741,699Other non-current assets and liabilities, net410(1,577)Net cash provided by operating activities258,355286,568CASH FLOWS FROM INVESTING ACTIVITIESExpenditures for property, plant and equipment(637,386)(388,402)Proceeds from sale of securities5,9353,839Purchases of securities(10,786)(7,341)Other(747)769Net cash used in investing activities(642,984)(391,135)CASH FLOWS FROM FINANCING ACTIVITIESIssuance of long-term debt100,000-Borrowings under revolving credit agreements1,073,550592,515Borrowings under term loan credit agreement200,000-Repayments of revolving credit agreements(960,350)(512,355)Issuance of common stock4,92918,081Dividends on common stock(55,677)(52,276)Refundable deposits from generators for transmission network upgrades31,15724,618Repayment of refundable deposits from generators for transmission network upgrades(31,186)(4,876)Other(6,112)(7,922)Net cash provided by  financing activities356,31157,785NET DECREASE IN CASH AND CASH EQUIVALENTS(28,318)(46,782)CASH AND CASH EQUIVALENTS ? Beginning of period58,34495,109CASH AND CASH EQUIVALENTS ? End of period$30,026$48,327 SOURCE ITC Holdings Corp.For further information: Investor/Analyst contact: Gretchen Holloway, +1-248-946-3595, gholloway@itctransco.com, Media contact: Robert Doetsch, +1-248-946-3493, rdoetsch@itctransco.com