H&R Block (HRB) Q4 2012 Earnings Call June 26, 2012 4:30 pm ET Executives Derek Drysdale - Director of Investor Relations William C. Cobb - Chief Executive Officer, President, Director and Member of Finance Committee Gregory J. Macfarlane - Chief Financial Officer Jason Houseworth - President of U.S. Tax Services Jason Houseworth Analysts Kartik Mehta - Northcoast Research Scott A. Schneeberger - Oppenheimer & Co. Inc., Research Division Thomas Allen - Morgan Stanley, Research Division Michael Millman - Millman Research Associates Vishnu Lekraj - Morningstar Inc., Research Division Presentation Operator
You can learn more about these risks in our Form 10-K for fiscal 2012, which we plan to file later today, as well as our other SEC filings. H&R Block undertakes no obligation to publicly update these risk factors or forward-looking statements.With that, I'll now turn the call over to Bill William C. Cobb Thanks, Derek, and congratulations on your promotion to Vice President. Well deserved. Good afternoon, everyone. As you know, we reported our fiscal 2012 results earlier today. Before we provide more color on those results, I'd like to update you on several recent developments. First, the board and I are extremely pleased that our senior management team is now complete with Greg's arrival earlier this month. I'm glad Greg is with us today for his first earnings call at H&R Block. He brings a wealth of experience from his 19 years of managing finance from both Ceridian and various GE entities. He's already making an impact in our organization, and we are confident that he'll be a major contributor to our success in the years ahead. We're also pleased that Jeff Brown has decided to stay with the company as our Chief Accounting and Risk Officer. As many of you know, we also recently completed a strategic realignment that will reduce our cost structure and drive a more cohesive and seamless end-to-end client experience with the more than 22 million clients we serve in the U.S. I'm pleased to have Jason Houseworth, Amy McAnarney, Susan Ehrlich and Robert Turtledove leading our U.S. clients services under my direction. These executives all have a track record of generating strong results, and I believe their leadership and commitment to our clients will serve us well. I'm confident that we now have the right management team in place to deliver better value for our clients and shareholders. We are excited about the opportunities we have in front of us to continue driving innovation and further improve our execution and client service.
For competitive reasons, today, we will not provide significant detail on next season's plans, but we'll give some directional insight so you can see where we're heading. We look forward to sharing our plans for next tax season with you at our annual Investor Conference in New York City on December 6.Now in April, we announced that Sand Canyon, our discontinued mortgage subsidiary, experienced higher rep and warrant-related claim activity during the fourth quarter. We believe it's possible this activity is being driven primarily by expiring statutes of limitations. After completing its reserve analysis, Sand Canyon did not accrue additional liability for rep and warrant-related losses during the fourth quarter. As a reminder, Sand Canyon is a separate legal entity from H&R Block, and we continue to believe our legal position is strong on any potential corporate veil-piercing arguments. Greg will go into more detail on the Sand Canyon later on the call. It's also important to note that incremental claim activity has not changed our views relative to our approach to capital allocation. Since I became CEO 13 months ago, we have returned $723 million to shareholders in the form of share repurchases and dividends. Over that span, we repurchased and retired 36 million shares at a total cost of $515 million or $14.38 per share, including 21.3 million shares since May 1 of this year. This represents 12% of the shares that were outstanding at the end of fiscal 2011. We also increased the annual dividend last December by 33% to $0.80 per share. Altogether, I believe our actions demonstrate that we have a lot of confidence in our business and that our philosophy on capital allocation is shareholder friendly. Read the rest of this transcript for free on seekingalpha.com