The debt capitalization ratio at December 31, 2012, was 53.5 percent, compared with 51.7 percent at September 30, 2012 and 53.4 percent at December 31, 2011. At December 31, 2012, there was $830.9 million of short-term debt outstanding, compared with $570.9 million at September 30, 2012 and $390.0 million at December 31, 2011. The short-term debt balance at December 31, 2012 included $260 million outstanding under a short-term facility used to redeem the 5.125% $250 million senior notes in August 2012.

For the quarter ended December 31, 2012, the company generated $29.9 million in operating cash flow, a $45.1 million increase compared with the quarter ended December 31, 2011. The increase primarily reflects the timing of customer collections and vendor payments, as well as the effect of a decrease in the amount of cash used to inject gas into storage, primarily in the company’s nonregulated segment.

Capital expenditures increased to $190.0 million for the quarter ended December 31, 2012, compared with $154.4 million in the prior-year quarter. The $35.6 million increase primarily reflects Rule 8.209 spending in the Mid-Tex Division of the natural gas distribution segment and for the Line W and Line WX pipeline expansion projects in the regulated transmission and storage segment.

Outlook

The leadership of Atmos Energy remains focused on enhancing shareholder value by delivering consistent earnings growth. Atmos Energy expects fiscal 2013 earnings to be at the higher end of the previously announced range of $2.40 to $2.50 per diluted share, excluding unrealized margins and the gain on the sale of the company’s Georgia operations. Net income from regulated operations is expected to be in the range of $211 million to $219 million, while net income from nonregulated operations is expected to be in the range of $9 million to $11 million. Capital expenditures for fiscal 2013 are expected to range between $770 million to $790 million.

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