SCANA Corporation ( SCG)

Q3 2011 Earnings Conference Call

October 26, 2011 13:30 ET


Byron Hinson – Director, Financial Planning and Investor Relations

Kevin Marsh – President and Chief Executive Officer

Steve Byrne – Chief Operating Officer

Jimmy Addison – Chief Financial Officer


Paul Patterson – Glenrock Associates

Steve Sanders – Stephens Inc.

Andrew Levi – Caris

Travis Miller – Morningstar

Erica Piserchia – Wunderlich Securities

Jonathan Reader – Wells Fargo Securities

Jim von Riesemann – UBS

Chris Ellinghaus – Williams Capital

Michael Lapides – Goldman Sachs

Dan Jenkins – Wisconsin Investment Board

Ashar Khan – Visium



Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you for standing by. My name is (Rocco) and I will be your conference facilitator today. At this time, I would like to welcome everyone to the SCANA Corporation Conference Call. All lines have been placed on mute to prevent any background noise. After the speakers’ remarks, there will be a question-and-answer period. (Operator Instructions) As a reminder, this conference call is being recorded on Wednesday, October 26, 2011. Anyone who does not consent to the taping may drop off from the line.

At this time, I would like to turn the call over to Byron Hinson, Director of Financial Planning and Investor Relations.

Byron Hinson – Director, Financial Planning and Investor Relations

Thank you and I’d like to welcome everyone to our earnings conference call, including those who are joining us on the webcast. As you know earlier today, we announced financial results for the third quarter of 2011.

Joining us on the call today are Kevin Marsh, President of SCANA; Steve Byrne, Chief Operating Officer of SCE&G; and Jimmy Addison, SCANA’s Chief Financial Officer. The slides and the earnings release that we’ll refer to in this call are available at

Before I turn the call over to Kevin, I would like to remind you that certain statements that may be made during today’s call which are not statements of historical facts are considered forward-looking statements and are subject to a number of risk and uncertainties which are shown on slide two and discussed in the company’s SEC filings. The company does not recognize obligation to update any forward looking statements.

Finally as noted on slide two, we may disclose certain non-GAAP measures during this presentation and the required Regulation G information can be found on Investor Relations website.

I’ll now turn the call over to Kevin.

Kevin Marsh – President and Chief Executive Officer

Thanks Byron, and thank you all for joining us today. During today’s call, we will provide an update on our nuclear project and our recent hearing before the NRC. We will also discuss our results for the third quarter and our financial guidance for the balance of 2011 and for 2012. As you all know, Bill Timmerman announced his retirement earlier this year. He will be retiring at the end of November and I will be moving into my new role as CEO.

Bill and I have worked together for many years. He has and will continue to be a valuable resource for me personally and for the company. I am pleased to report that our transition is progressing as planned and I look forward to my new responsibilities. We continue to see significant industrial announcements in our service territory.

On slide three, we have provided an update of economic expansion announcements. This period was very impressive including a large expansion at the Bridgestone tire facility in Aiken County and a new continental tire operation in Sumter County. In total, announcement since July 1st suggest a creation of over 3000 new jobs with an investment of approximately $1.9 billion. This brings our year-to-date planned industrial investments to over $2.5 billion with more than 5,500 job additions.

In addition to industrial growth, we also continue to see customer growth in our residential and commercial categories. These are promising signs of economic recovery and we are excited to be positioned to provide clean, safe, reliable energy for the citizens and industries in South Carolina in the future.

Please turn to slide four. We’ve set forth our regulated returns and related filings. The chart at the top of the slide shows allowed returns at our three largest regulated subsidiaries as of June 30, 2011, the date of our most recent filing. The third quarter earned returned filings for our Electric and Gas businesses will be made in mid-December.

Our electric business earned 8.6%. The decrease from the previous filing was due primarily to the elimination of the second quarter of 2010, which was positively impacted by weather. You might recall beginning in the third quarter of 2010 we implemented a weather normalization mechanism, so our returns at the Electric business are no longer impacted by weather. This figure does not include any new nuclear CWFE or associated rate increases, as those allowances were handled separately under the Base Load Review Act.

As of June 30, 2011, our gas business at SCE&G was earning approximately 7.72%. This does not incorporate the recent 8.5 million rate increase, will effective in November of this year under the Rate Stabilization Act. This increase will restore the return to approximately 10.25%. And overall earned returns in the Gas business fall 50 basis points above or below our allowed return of 10.25%, we adjust rates through our annual Rate Stabilization filing.

Our North Carolina gas business continues to perform well, and is earnings its allowed return principally due to the growth in the business and cost control. As you can see form timeline at the bottom of this slide, we have completed all of our – one of our plan regulatory filings for the year.

On slide five, we review our new nuclear Base Load Review Act filings and related rate increases. As we mentioned in our second quarter call, we filed our annual request for revised rates under the Base Load Review Act in May. In response to that request, in September, the Public Service Commission of South Carolina approved an increase of $52.8 million or approximately 2.4% to the retail electric rates of SCE&G. The new rates will be effective for bills rendered on or after October 30 of this year.

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