Pinnacle West Reports 2019 First-Quarter Earnings

  • Colder-than-normal weather drives quarter-over-quarter earnings
    increase
  • Customer growth a solid 1.9 percent as Arizona’s economy continues
    to expand
  • Company enhances customer value by lowering monthly bills

PHOENIX–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Pinnacle West Capital Corp. (NYSE: PNW) today reported consolidated net
income attributable to common shareholders of $17.9 million, or $0.16
per diluted share of common stock, for the quarter ended March 31, 2019.
This result compares with $3.2 million, or $0.03 per diluted share, for
the same period in 2018.

The second coldest February in the past 40 years contributed to
customers using more energy to heat their homes and businesses. The
resulting increase in retail sales led to stronger financial results
than the year-ago first quarter,” said Pinnacle West Chairman, President
and Chief Executive Officer Don
Brandt
.

The effects of weather positively impacted results by
$0.14 per share compared to the year-ago period. As a result, the colder
weather almost doubled the number of residential heating degree-days (a
measure of the effects of weather) versus the same 2018 period.
Weather-normalized electricity sales were 1 percent higher in the first
quarter compared to 2018’s first quarter as consumption outpaced the
effects of energy efficiency and distributed generation initiatives for
the third consecutive quarter.

Decreased operations and maintenance expenses, due in part to lower
planned fossil plant outages, also positively affected the quarterly
results. Altogether, the positive variances more than offset lower
market returns for pension and other post-retirement non-service
benefits; higher depreciation and amortization, primarily due to
increased plant in service; and lower transmission revenues.

As our service territory continues to experience solid customer growth
of 1.9 percent and a steady improvement in economic conditions, we are
well-positioned for a strong year,” said Brandt. “Additionally, we
remain focused on executing our clean-energy program, actively managing
our costs, and identifying additional efficiencies and savings
throughout our organization.”

Brandt added that the company’s core emphasis continues to be providing
clean, reliable and affordable electricity to its 1.2 million customers.

Delivering Customer Value
Already boasting some of the most
extensive solar resources of any U.S. energy company and an energy mix
that is 50 percent clean, APS recently announced one of the country’s
largest clean energy initiatives – adding nearly a gigawatt of new
technology to its generating fleet by 2025.

Brandt said batteries coupled with existing solar power plants – and new
solar plants built with storage – will “allow us to deliver clean energy
to our customers during times of peak consumption. Additionally, these
new projects will help bring clean energy jobs and added economic
development benefits to parts of rural Arizona.”

In addition to advancing Arizona’s solar and clean-energy leadership,
APS filed a request last month with the Arizona Corporation
Commission to again lower customer rates as a result of federal tax
reform. Once approved, this latest reduction will bring overall savings
from the tax expense adjustor to nearly $9 per month, or $108 a year,
for a customer using the average amount of electricity. Customers began
receiving these tax savings in March 2018, and a second wave took effect
beginning with their bills in April 2019.

Combining the tax reform reductions with additional savings from lower
fuel costs, the average APS residential customer is benefiting from
lower bills of $14 per month, or $168 a year, compared to one year ago.

Financial Outlook
The company reaffirmed its 2019
consolidated earnings will be within a range of $4.75 to $4.95 per
diluted share, and expects to achieve a consolidated earned return on
average common equity of more than 9.5 percent.

Key factors and assumptions underlying the 2019 outlook can be found in
the first-quarter 2019 earnings presentation slides on the Company’s
website at pinnaclewest.com/investors.

Conference Call and Webcast
Pinnacle West invites interested
parties to listen to the live webcast of management’s conference call to
discuss the Company’s 2019 first-quarter results, as well as recent
developments, at noon ET (9 a.m. Arizona time) today, May 1. A replay of
the webcast can be accessed at pinnaclewest.com/presentations.
To access the live conference call by telephone, dial 877-407-8035 or
201-689-8035 for international callers. A replay of the call also will
be available until 11:59 p.m. ET, Wednesday, May 8, 2019, by calling
(877) 481-4010 in the U.S. and Canada or (919) 882-2331 internationally
and entering passcode 45615.

General Information
Pinnacle
West Capital Corp
., an energy holding company based in Phoenix, has
consolidated assets of almost $18 billion, about 6,000 megawatts of
generating capacity and 6,300 employees in Arizona and New Mexico.
Through its principal subsidiary, Arizona
Public Service
, the company provides retail electricity service to
nearly 1.2 million Arizona homes and businesses. For more information
about Pinnacle West, visit the company’s website at pinnaclewest.com.

Dollar amounts in this news release are after income taxes. Earnings per
share amounts are based on average diluted common shares outstanding.
For more information on Pinnacle West’s operating statistics and
earnings, please visit pinnaclewest.com/investors.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This press release contains forward-looking statements based on our
current expectations, including statements regarding our earnings
guidance and financial outlook and goals. These forward-looking
statements are often identified by words such as “estimate,” “predict,”
“may,” “believe,” “plan,” “expect,” “require,” “intend,” “assume,”
“project” and similar words. Because actual results may differ
materially from expectations, we caution readers not to place undue
reliance on these statements. A number of factors could cause future
results to differ materially from historical results, or from outcomes
currently expected or sought by Pinnacle West or APS. These factors
include, but are not limited to:

  • our ability to manage capital expenditures and operations and
    maintenance costs while maintaining high reliability and customer
    service levels;
  • variations in demand for electricity, including those due to weather,
    seasonality, the general economy, customer and sales growth (or
    decline), and the effects of energy conservation measures and
    distributed generation;
  • power plant and transmission system performance and outages;
  • competition in retail and wholesale power markets;
  • regulatory and judicial decisions, developments and proceedings;
  • new legislation, ballot initiatives and regulation, including those
    relating to environmental requirements, regulatory policy, nuclear
    plant operations and potential deregulation of retail electric markets;
  • fuel and water supply availability;
  • our ability to achieve timely and adequate rate recovery of our costs,
    including returns on and of debt and equity capital investment;
  • our ability to meet renewable energy and energy efficiency mandates
    and recover related costs;
  • risks inherent in the operation of nuclear facilities, including spent
    fuel disposal uncertainty;
  • current and future economic conditions in Arizona, including in real
    estate markets;
  • the direct or indirect effect on our facilities or business from
    cybersecurity threats or intrusions, data security breaches, terrorist
    attack, physical attack, severe storms, droughts, or other
    catastrophic events, such as fires, explosions, pandemic health events
    or similar occurrences;
  • the development of new technologies which may affect electric sales or
    delivery;
  • the cost of debt and equity capital and the ability to access capital
    markets when required;
  • environmental, economic and other concerns surrounding coal-fired
    generation, including regulation of greenhouse gas emissions;
  • volatile fuel and purchased power costs;
  • the investment performance of the assets of our nuclear
    decommissioning trust, pension, and other post-retirement benefit
    plans and the resulting impact on future funding requirements;
  • the liquidity of wholesale power markets and the use of derivative
    contracts in our business;
  • potential shortfalls in insurance coverage;
  • new accounting requirements or new interpretations of existing
    requirements;
  • generation, transmission and distribution facility and system
    conditions and operating costs;
  • the ability to meet the anticipated future need for additional
    generation and associated transmission facilities in our region;
  • the willingness or ability of our counterparties, power plant
    participants and power plant land owners to meet contractual or other
    obligations or extend the rights for continued power plant operations;
    and
  • restrictions on dividends or other provisions in our credit agreements
    and Arizona Corporation Commission orders.

These and other factors are discussed in Risk Factors described in Part
1, Item 1A of the Pinnacle West/APS Annual Report on Form 10-K for the
fiscal year ended December 31, 2018, which readers should review
carefully before placing any reliance on our financial statements or
disclosures. Neither Pinnacle West nor APS assumes any obligation to
update these statements, even if our internal estimates change, except
as required by law.

 
PINNACLE WEST CAPITAL CORPORATION
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME
(unaudited)
(dollars and shares in thousands, except per share amounts)
 
 
    THREE MONTHS ENDED
MARCH 31,
2019     2018
   
Operating Revenues $ 740,530 $ 692,714
 
Operating Expenses
Fuel and purchased power 230,588 197,110
Operations and maintenance 245,634 265,682
Depreciation and amortization 148,707 144,825
Taxes other than income taxes 55,090 53,600
Other expenses   427     163  
Total   680,446     661,380  
 
Operating Income   60,084     31,334  
 
Other Income (Deductions)
Allowance for equity funds used during construction 11,188 14,079
Pension and other postretirement non-service credits – net 5,114 12,859
Other income 7,169 3,985
Other expense   (4,358 )   (3,229 )
Total   19,113     27,694  
 
Interest Expense
Interest charges 60,653 58,954
Allowance for borrowed funds used during construction   (6,665 )   (6,755 )
Total   53,988     52,199  
 
Income Before Income Taxes 25,209 6,829
 
Income Taxes   2,418     (1,265 )
 
Net Income 22,791 8,094
 
Less: Net income attributable to noncontrolling interests 4,873 4,873
   
Net Income Attributable To Common Shareholders $ 17,918   $ 3,221  
 
 
Weighted-Average Common Shares Outstanding – Basic 112,337 112,017
 
Weighted-Average Common Shares Outstanding – Diluted 112,735 112,493
 
Earnings Per Weighted-Average Common Share Outstanding
Net income attributable to common shareholders – basic $ 0.16 $ 0.03
Net income attributable to common shareholders – diluted $ 0.16 $ 0.03
 

Contacts

Media Contact: Alan Bunnell (602) 250-3376
Analyst Contact:
Stefanie Layton (602) 250-4541
Website: pinnaclewest.com

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