NEW YORK, April 29, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Brinson Patrick Securities Corporation, a boutique investment bank specializing in at-the-market (ATM) offerings, reported today that U.S. companies raised roughly $9.1 billion through ATMs in 2012, compared to $8.1 billion in 2011, a 13 percent year-over-year increase. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130429/NY02685LOGO ) In the fourth quarter of 2012, U.S. companies raised $1.6 billion through ATMs, compared to $1.5 billion in the fourth quarter of 2011, a 7 percent increase. Companies whose ATMs were active in the fourth quarter included: Kinder Morgan EnergyPartners, LP. (NYSE: KMP), Houston, TX; DCT Industrial Trust, Inc. (NYSE: DCT), Denver, CO; CubeSmart (NYSE: CUBE), Wayne, PA; Enterprise Products Partners, LP. (NYSE: EPD), Houston, TX. "2012 demonstrated that more public companies utilized ATM offerings to strategically raise capital compared to 2011," said Todd Wyche, CEO of Brinson Patrick. "Companies continued to find opportunities to raise capital at attractive prices with the U.S. equity markets having a strong year. The great benefit of an ATM offering is that a company can choose to only raise capital during its most advantageous times of the year." An ATM provides an efficient means of raising equity capital over time by enabling a publicly traded company to tap into the existing secondary market for its shares on an as-needed basis. With an ATM, an exchange-listed company incrementally sells newly issued shares into the trading market through a designated broker-dealer at prevailing market prices, rather than via a traditional underwritten offering of a fixed number of shares at a fixed price all at once. ATMs are also generally less expensive and less complicated to execute than traditional equity offerings and do not require a lot of executive time.