In our opinion, free cash flow provides useful information to investors regarding our ability to generate cash from business operations that is available for acquisitions and other investments, service of debt principal, dividends and share repurchases. We use free cash flow, as defined, as one measure to monitor and evaluate performance. Our definition of free cash flow may be different from definitions used by other companies.
The following table summarizes free cash flow by quarter:
|Dec. 31,||Mar. 31,||Jun. 30,||Sep. 30,||Dec. 31,||Mar. 31,||Jun. 30,||Sep. 30,|
|Cash (used for) provided by continuing operating activities||$ (189.0||)||$||253.5||$||264.1||$||390.1||$||167.3||$||202.6||$||293.9||$||351.0|
|Capital expenditures of continuing operations||(31.6||)||(30.9||)||(32.4||)||(44.7||)||(21.6||)||(33.4||)||(31.9||)||(59.3||)|
|Excess income tax benefit from share-based compensation||9.8||7.0||0.5||1.2||10.6||10.4||1.6||9.3|
Free cash flow 1
1 Free cash flow for the first quarter of fiscal 2012 includes a discretionary pre-tax contribution to the Company’s U.S. pension trust of $300 million.
Return On Invested Capital
Our press release contains information regarding Return On Invested Capital (ROIC), which is a non-GAAP financial measure. We believe that ROIC is useful to investors as a measure of performance and of the effectiveness of the use of capital in our operations. We use ROIC as one measure to monitor and evaluate performance. Our measure of ROIC may be different from that used by other companies. We define ROIC as the percentage resulting from the following calculation: