Portland General Electric Announces Third Quarter 2017 Results

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Portland General Electric Announces Third Quarter 2017 Results

  • Strong third quarter results due to increased retail deliveries and favorable weather
  • Settlement reached on all issues in the 2018 General Rate Case
  • PGE joined the western Energy Imbalance Market on Oct. 1

PORTLAND, Ore.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Portland General Electric Company (NYSE: POR) today reported net income of $40 million, or 44 cents per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2017. This compares with net income of $34 million, or 38 cents per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2016. The company is reaffirming 2017 earnings guidance of $2.20-$2.35 per diluted share.

"PGE's strong third quarter financial performance was driven by higher energy deliveries across all customer groups," said Jim Piro, CEO of Portland General Electric. "We also achieved several important milestones on key initiatives, including settlement of all issues in our 2018 general rate case, acknowledgement of our 2016 integrated resource plan and a successful transition to the western Energy Imbalance Market on October 1st."

Q3 2017 earnings compared to Q3 2016 earnings

The increase in third quarter earnings per diluted share for 2017 in comparison to the third quarter of 2016 was due to an increase in retail deliveries driven by increased customer usage and increased customer counts, as well as favorable weather. This increase was partially offset by an increase in the estimated refund under the decoupling mechanism, higher depreciation and amortization expense, an increase in the effective tax rate and other miscellaneous items.

Company Updates

Integrated Resource Plan

In November 2016, PGE filed an IRP with the Oregon Public Utility Commission. The 2016 IRP addresses acquisition of additional resources to meet renewable portfolio standard requirements and replace energy and capacity from the Boardman Generating Station, which will cease coal-fired operations at the end of 2020. Further actions identified through 2021 are expected to offset expiring power purchase agreements and integrate variable energy resources, such as wind or solar generation facilities. The 2016 IRP also considers the Oregon Clean Electricity Plan, which, among other things, increased the RPS requirements for 2025 and future years.

In August 2017, the OPUC acknowledged PGE's 2016 IRP and the following primary action plan items:

  • Acknowledge capacity needs of 561 MW, of which 240 MW must be dispatchable, in 2021;
  • Acquire a total of 135 MWa of cost-effective energy efficiency;
  • Acquire at least 77 MW (winter) and 69 MW (summer) demand response through 2020 and 16 MW of dispatchable standby generation from customers to help manage peak load conditions and other supply contingencies;
  • Deploy 1 MWa of conservation voltage reduction through 2020;
  • Submit one or more energy storage proposals in accordance with Oregon House Bill 2193, by January 1, 2018, with an initial proposal expected to be filed with the OPUC by mid-November 2017; and
  • Perform various research and studies related to flexible capacity and curtailment metrics, customer insights, decarbonization, risks associated with direct access programs, treatment of market capacity, accessing resources from Montana, and load forecasting improvements.

PGE is engaged in bilateral negotiations with owners of existing regional resources to fill its capacity need. In August 2017, the company filed with the OPUC a request for a waiver of the OPUC's competitive bidding guidelines. In that filing, PGE requested a waiver to procure 350-450 MW of capacity to partially satisfy PGE's 561 MW capacity deficit. PGE expects additional capacity contributions from contracts with qualifying facilities as defined by the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978, acquisition of energy storage in compliance with House Bill 2193, and an assumed capacity contribution from incremental renewables procured through a request for proposal. The OPUC is scheduled to make a decision on the waiver request by December 5, 2017, and the company currently anticipates negotiations to be complete by the end of the first quarter of 2018. Following the outcome of the bilateral negotiations and waiver process, PGE may request approval from the OPUC to issue RFPs for any remaining capacity need.

The OPUC did not acknowledge PGE's proposed actions for acquiring renewable resources and asked the company to work with OPUC staff and parties to prepare and submit a revised proposal, which PGE presented at a public meeting on October 10, 2017. In the revised proposal, the company identified the potential of revising the procurement target for the addition of RPS compliant renewable resources to 100 MWa, which could include unbundled RECs. PGE expects to submit an IRP addendum by the end of 2017 that would seek acknowledgement of a revised renewable action plan, including the issuance of RFPs for renewable resources.

Since issuing the IRP, PGE has identified a potential benchmark wind resource that could have a nameplate capacity of up to approximately 300 MW, which would meet the need for the renewable resources, and which would qualify for the production tax credit. The company continues to explore this option. The submission of this resource into an RFP for renewable resources as a benchmark bid is subject to additional due diligence and negotiation along with execution of definitive agreements. If agreements are reached, the potential benchmark resource would be considered in the RFP along with other renewable resource offerings.

The RFP process will include oversight by an independent evaluator and review by the OPUC.

2018 General Rate Case

On February 28, 2017, the company filed with the OPUC a general rate case based on a 2018 test year. The filing includes investments to ensure system safety and reliability and to better meet customers' changing needs and service expectations. PGE's initial filing proposed a $100 million increase in the annual revenue requirement related primarily to an increase in base business costs for upgrades to PGE's transmission and distribution system, investments in strengthening and safeguarding the grid, and support for key initiatives such as participation in the Western Energy Imbalance Market. The proposal was based upon:

  • A capital structure of 50 percent debt and 50 percent equity;
  • A return on equity of 9.75 percent; and
  • A rate base of $4.6 billion.

PGE, OPUC staff, and certain customer groups have reached agreements that resolve all issues in the case, provide for an expected $20 million net increase in annual revenue requirements, and reflect:

  • A capital structure of 50 percent debt and 50 percent equity;
  • A return on equity of 9.5 percent; and
  • A rate base of $4.5 billion.

The net increase in annual revenue requirement as proposed in the company's initial filing and as revised consists of the following (in millions):

          As Filed February 28, 2017                           $100
Load and Power Cost Updates ($28)
Depreciation Study Updates ($8)
Base Business Revenue Requirement Updates:
Lower return on equity ($10)
Lower labor costs ($9)
Adjustment to depreciation expense ($8)
Lower level of plant in service ($5)
Other reductions to rate base ($4)
Other various modifications ($8)
Subtotal ($44)
As Stipulated $20

Regulatory review of the 2018 GRC will continue until the final order is issued, which is expected in December 2017, with new customer prices expected to become effective January 1, 2018. Final revenue requirement amounts subject to revision include power costs (to be finalized November 2017) and actual cost of debt, including any additional debt issuances. Any subsequent reductions in PGE's overall cost of long-term debt through June 30, 2018 will be reflected either in the final 2018 GRC update or through a supplemental tariff filing. All stipulations remain subject to OPUC approval.

The 2018 GRC filing (OPUC Docket UE 319), as well as copies of direct and reply testimony, exhibits, and stipulations are available on the OPUC website at www.oregon.gov/puc.

Western Energy Imbalance Market

On October 1, PGE officially began full participation in the western Energy Imbalance Market.

"Joining the EIM is an important milestone in our effort to build a smarter, cleaner, more resilient energy grid," said Maria Pope, PGE's president and incoming CEO. "Our customers will benefit from our participation, as it will help us maintain reliability and keep power affordable while making efficient use of carbon-free renewable resources throughout the region."

As a market participant, PGE's generating plants now receive automated dispatch signals from the California Independent System Operator, allowing for load-balancing with other EIM participants in five-minute intervals. This gives PGE access to the least-cost energy available in the region to meet changes in real-time energy demand and short-term variations in customers' power use. Additionally, it maximizes the use of renewable resources by making it easier to take immediate advantage of available wind and solar generation anywhere in the system while efficiently integrating variable output with other, dispatchable resources.

Third quarter operating results

          Earnings Reconciliation of Q3 2016 to Q3 2017
($ in millions, except EPS)          









Reported Q3 2016           $ 40           $ 34           $ 0.38
Electric Retail price change (7 ) (4 ) (0.05 )
Electric Retail volume change 37 22 0.25
Change in decoupling deferral (3 ) (2 ) (0.02 )
Electric wholesale price and volume change 2 1 0.01
Other Items 4             2             0.02  
Change in Revenue 33 19 0.21
Power Cost                                    
Change in average power cost (1 ) (1 ) (0.01 )
Change purchased power and generation (3 )           (2 )           (0.02 )
Change in Power Costs (4 ) (3 ) (0.03 )
Generation, transmission, distribution (4 ) (2 ) (0.02 )
Administrative and general (1 )           (1 )           (0.01 )
Change in O&M (5 ) (3 ) (0.03 )
Other Items                                    
Depreciation & amortization (8 ) (4 ) (0.06 )
AFDC Equity*** (1 ) (1 ) (0.01 )
Other Items (2 )           (2 )           (0.02 )
Change in Other Items           (11 )           (7 )           (0.09 )
Reported Q3 2017           $ 53             $ 40             $ 0.44  
* After tax adjustments based on PGE's statutory tax rate of 39.5%
** Some values may not foot due to rounding
*** Statutory tax rate does not apply to AFDC equity

Total revenues for the three months ended September 30, 2017 increased $31 million compared to the three months ended September 30, 2016, as total retail revenues increased $27 million while wholesale and other revenues were a total of $4 million higher.

The change in retail revenues resulted largely from the following:

  • A $37 million increase resulting from 8.5 percent greater retail energy deliveries due to favorable weather conditions and increased average usage per customer across all classes. Energy deliveries to residential customers increased 12.3 percent in the third quarter of 2017 due in part to the effects of weather, as temperatures in 2017 were abnormally warm during the summer cooling season, and customer growth continued. Energy deliveries to commercial customers showed an increase of 6.8 percent while deliveries to industrial customers increased 6.0 percent, largely due to strength in the high tech sector; and
  • A $3 million increase in various Supplemental tariffs, the largest of which was a $1 million increase due to the accelerated cost recovery of Colstrip; partially offset by
  • A $7 million decrease that resulted from customer price changes; and
  • A $4 million decrease that resulted from other tariffs, which included $3 million greater estimated refunds under the decoupling mechanism, combined with a variety of smaller items.

Total cooling degree-days for the three months ended September 30, 2017 were up 45 percent from the level for the three months ended September 30, 2016, 43 percent above the quarterly average. Total heating degree-days for the three months ended September 30, 2017 were on par with the three months ended September 30, 2016 and the historical average.

The following table indicates the number of heating and cooling degree-days for the three months ended September 30, 2017 and 2016, along with 15-year averages based on weather data provided by the National Weather Service, as measured at Portland International Airport:

                Heating Degree-days       Cooling Degree-days
2017       2016       Avg. 2017       2016       Avg.
July 1 3 9 164 140 163
August 1 3 8 275 224 168
September 76   72   61   132   30   68
Totals for the quarter 78   78   78   571   394   399

Wholesale revenues for the three months ended September 30, 2017 increased $2 million, or 4 percent, from the three months ended September 30, 2016, and consisted of a $7 million increase related to a 16 percent increase in average wholesale price partially offset by a $5 million decrease related to a 10 percent decrease in wholesale sales volume.

Actual NVPC for the three months ended September 30, 2017 increased $2 million when compared with the three months ended September 30, 2016. The increase was driven by a 1 percent increase in the average variable power cost per MWh, and a 2 percent increase in total system load. The increase in wholesale revenues was driven primarily by a 16 percent increase in the average wholesale sales price, offset slightly by a 10 percent decrease in wholesale sales volume. For the three months ended September 30, 2017, actual NVPC was $22 million above the baseline as the company met higher customer load, driven by historically hot weather, with energy purchased at super peak prices in the open market in addition to the cost of foregoing the use of company resources in order to maintain mandated reliability reserves. For the three months ended September 30, 2016, actual NVPC was $3 million above baseline NVPC.

Generation, transmission and distribution expense increased $4 million, or 6 percent, in the three months ended September 30, 2017 compared with the three months ended September 30, 2016 driven primarily by $2 million of operating expense for Carty (placed in service July 29, 2016).

Administrative and other expense increased $1 million, or 2 percent, in the three months ended September 30, 2017 compared with the three months ended September 30, 2016. The increase was primarily due to a $2 million increase in employee incentives, offset by decreases in other miscellaneous expenses.

Depreciation and amortization expense increased $8 million in the three months ended September 30, 2017 compared with the three months ended September 30, 2016. The increase was driven by higher depreciation expense of $6 million resulting from capital additions, $2 million of which was due to Carty going into service in July 2016, and a $1 million decrease in the amortization credit related to the Trojan spent fuel refund to customers, which is also reflected in revenues as increases or decreases in expense resulting from amortization of regulatory assets or liabilities are directly offset in revenues.

Interest expense, net increased $2 million, or 7%, in the three months ended September 30, 2017 compared with the three months ended September 30, 2016 primarily due to a lower Allowance for borrowed funds used during construction, as a result of Carty going into service in July 2016.

Other income, net increased $2 million for the three months ended September 30, 2017 compared with the three months ended September 30, 2016 due largely to interest income on various regulatory assets and unrealized gains on trust assets.

Income tax expense was $13 million in the three months ended September 30, 2017 compared with $6 million in the three months ended September 30, 2016, with effective tax rates of 24.5 percent and 15.0 percent, respectively. The increase in income tax expense and effective tax rate was primarily driven by higher pre-tax income and lower PTCs.

2017 earnings guidance

PGE reaffirms its 2017 guidance of $2.20-$2.35 per diluted share. The guidance is based on the following assumptions:

  • A decline in retail deliveries between zero and one percent, weather-adjusted;
  • Normal hydro conditions for the remainder of the year based on the current hydro forecast;
  • Wind generation for the remainder of the year based on five years of historic levels or forecast studies when historical data are not available;
  • Normal thermal plant operations for the remainder of the year;
  • Depreciation and amortization expense between $340 million and $350 million; and
  • Operating and maintenance costs between $555 million and $575 million.

Third Quarter 2017 earnings call and web cast — October 27, 2017

PGE will host a conference call with financial analysts and investors on Friday, October 27, 2017 at 11 a.m. ET. The conference call will be webcast live on the PGE website at investors.portlandgeneral.com. A replay of the call will be available beginning at 2 p.m. ET on Friday, October 27, through Friday, November 3.

Jim Piro, CEO; Maria Pope, president; Jim Lobdell, senior vice president of finance, CFO, and treasurer; and Chris Liddle, manager, corporate finance and investor relations, will participate in the call. Management will respond to questions following formal comments.

The attached unaudited condensed consolidated statements of income, condensed consolidated balance sheets, and condensed consolidated statements of cash flows, as well as the supplemental operating statistics, are an integral part of this earnings release.

About Portland General Electric Company

Portland General Electric Company is a fully integrated utility based in Portland, Ore., serving approximately 873,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in 51 cities. For more than 125 years, PGE has been delivering safe, reliable energy to Oregonians. With approximately 2,750 employees across the state, PGE is committed to building a cleaner, more efficient energy future. Together with its customers, PGE has the number one voluntary renewable energy program in the U.S. For more information, visit PGE's website at investors.portlandgeneral.com.

Safe Harbor Statement

Statements in this news release that relate to future plans, objectives, expectations, performance, events and the like may constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding earnings guidance; statements regarding the recovery of capital costs for the Carty Generating Station; statements regarding future load, hydro conditions and operating and maintenance costs; statements concerning implementation of the company's integrated resource plan; statements concerning future compliance with regulations limiting emissions from generation facilities and the costs to achieve such compliance; as well as other statements containing words such as "anticipates," "believes," "intends," "estimates," "promises," "expects," "should," "conditioned upon," and similar expressions. Investors are cautioned that any such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, including reductions in demand for electricity; the sale of excess energy during periods of low demand or low wholesale market prices; operational risks relating to the company's generation facilities, including hydro conditions, wind conditions, disruption of fuel supply, and unscheduled plant outages, which may result in unanticipated operating, maintenance and repair costs, as well as replacement power costs; failure to complete capital projects on schedule or within budget, or the abandonment of capital projects, which could result in the company's inability to recover project costs; the costs of compliance with environmental laws and regulations, including those that govern emissions from thermal power plants; changes in weather, hydroelectric and energy markets conditions, which could affect the availability and cost of purchased power and fuel; changes in capital market conditions, which could affect the availability and cost of capital and result in delay or cancellation of capital projects; the outcome of various legal and regulatory proceedings; and general economic and financial market conditions. As a result, actual results may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements included in this news release are based on information available to the company on the date hereof and such statements speak only as of the date hereof. The company assumes no obligation to update any such forward-looking statement. Prospective investors should also review the risks and uncertainties listed in the company's most recent annual report on form 10-K and the company's reports on forms 8-K and 10-Q filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, including management's discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operations and the risks described therein from time to time.

Source: Portland General Electric Company





(Dollars in millions, except per share amounts)


Three Months Ended
September 30,
Nine Months Ended
September 30,
2017       2016 2017       2016
Revenues, net $ 515 $ 484 $ 1,494 $ 1,399
Operating expenses:
Purchased power and fuel 184 180 443 455
Generation, transmission and distribution 73 69 235 199
Administrative and other 64 63 197 185
Depreciation and amortization 87 79 257 244
Taxes other than income taxes 30 29 94 89
Total operating expenses 438 420 1,226 1,172
Income from operations 77 64 268 227
Interest expense, net 30 28 90 82
Other income:
Allowance for equity funds used during construction 4 4 9 19
Miscellaneous income, net 2 4
Other income, net 6 4 13 19
Income before income tax expense 53 40 191 164
Income tax expense 13 6 46 32
Net income and Comprehensive income $ 40 $ 34 $ 145 $ 132
Weighted-average shares outstanding—basic and diluted (in thousands) 89,065 88,921 89,044 88,885
Earnings per share—basic and diluted $ 0.44 $ 0.38 $ 1.62 $ 1.49
Dividends declared per common share $ 0.34 $ 0.32 $ 1.00 $ 0.94



(Dollars in millions)


September 30,
December 31,


Current assets:
Cash and cash equivalents




Accounts receivable, net 151 155
Unbilled revenues 71 107
Inventories 70 82
Regulatory assets—current 42 36
Other current assets 43     77  
Total current assets 466     463  
Electric utility plant, net 6,638 6,434
Regulatory assets—noncurrent 526 498
Nuclear decommissioning trust 41 41
Non-qualified benefit plan trust 37 34
Other noncurrent assets 51     57  
Total assets $ 7,759  


September 30,
December 31,


Current liabilities:
Accounts payable $ 100


Liabilities from price risk management activities—current 43


Current portion of long-term debt 100


Accrued expenses and other current liabilities 248    


Total current liabilities 491    


Long-term debt, net of current portion 2,277


Regulatory liabilities—noncurrent 1,002


Deferred income taxes 701


Unfunded status of pension and postretirement plans 288


Liabilities from price risk management activities—noncurrent 150


Asset retirement obligations 166


Non-qualified benefit plan liabilities 105


Other noncurrent liabilities 177    


Total liabilities 5,357    


Commitments and contingencies (see notes)
Portland General Electric Company shareholders' equity:
Preferred stock, no par value, 30,000,000 shares authorized; none issued and outstanding as of September 30, 2017 and December 31, 2016

Common stock, no par value, 160,000,000 shares authorized; 89,091,955 and 88,946,704 shares issued and outstanding as of September 30, 2017 and December 31, 2016, respectively



Accumulated other comprehensive loss





Retained earnings 1,205    


Total equity 2,402    


Total liabilities and equity $ 7,759  





(In millions)


Nine Months Ended September 30,
2017           2016
Cash flows from operating activities:
Net income $ 145 $ 132
Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash provided by operating activities:
Depreciation and amortization 257 244
Deferred income taxes 35 18
Pension and other postretirement benefits 19 21
Allowance for equity funds used during construction (9 ) (19 )
Decoupling mechanism deferrals, net of amortization (15 ) (4 )
Other non-cash income and expenses, net 18 12
Changes in working capital:
Decrease in accounts receivable and unbilled revenues 40 53
Decrease in inventories 12 1
Decrease in margin deposits, net 4 25
Increase in accounts payable and accrued liabilities 14 31
Other working capital items, net 20 12
Other, net (21 ) (29 )
Net cash provided by operating activities 519   497  
Cash flows from investing activities:
Capital expenditures (369 ) (454 )
Sales of Nuclear decommissioning trust securities 14 17
Purchases of Nuclear decommissioning trust securities (12 ) (16 )
Other, net (2 ) (1 )
Net cash used in investing activities (369 ) (454 )
Cash flows from financing activities:
Proceeds from issuance of long-term debt 75 265
Payments on long-term debt (50 ) (133 )
Change in short-term debt (6 )
Dividends paid (87 ) (82 )
Other (5 ) (3 )
Net cash (used in) provided by financing activities (67 ) 41  
Increase in cash and cash equivalents 83 84
Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of period 6   4  
Cash and cash equivalents, end of period $ 89   $ 88  
Supplemental cash flow information is as follows:
Cash paid for interest, net of amounts capitalized $ 68 $ 61
Cash paid for income taxes 16 12
Non-cash investing and financing activities:
Assets obtained under capital lease 73 57




Three Months Ended September 30,
2017       2016
Revenues* (dollars in millions):            
Residential $ 224 43 % $ 203 42 %
Commercial 178 35 170 35
Industrial 55   11   54   11  
Subtotal 457 89 427 88
Other retail revenues, net (2 ) (1 ) 1    
Total retail revenues 455 88 428 88
Wholesale revenues 50 10 48 10
Other operating revenues 10   2   8   2  
Total revenues $ 515   100 % $ 484   100 %
Energy deliveries (MWh in thousands):
Residential 1,817 29 % 1,618 27 %
Commercial 1,851 30 1,751 30
Industrial 752   12   754   13  
Subtotal 4,420   71   4,123   70  
Direct access:
Commercial 169 3 141 2
Industrial 366   6   301   5  
Subtotal 535   9   442   7  
Total retail energy deliveries 4,955 80 4,565 77
Wholesale energy deliveries 1,224   20   1,360   23  
Total energy deliveries 6,179   100 % 5,925   100 %
Average number of retail customers:
Residential 763,553 88 % 753,345 87 %
Commercial 108,705 12 107,844 13
Industrial 200 204
Direct access 588   373  
Total 873,046   100 % 861,766   100 %

* Includes revenues from customers who purchase their energy from the Company as well as $10 million and $7 million in revenues for 2017 and for 2016, respectively, from Direct Access customers for transmission and delivery charges only.





Three Months Ended September 30,
2017       2016
Sources of energy (MWh in thousands):            
Coal 1,404 24 % 1,418 24 %
Natural gas 2,442   41   2,243   39  
Total thermal 3,846 65 3,661 63
Hydro 277 5 267 4
Wind 480   8   570   10  
Total generation 4,603   78   4,498   77  
Purchased power:
Term 908 15 913 16
Hydro 332 6 322 6
Wind 83   1   91   1  
Total purchased power 1,323   22   1,326   23  
Total system load 5,926   100 % 5,824   100 %
Less: wholesale sales (1,224 ) (1,360 )
Retail load requirement 4,702   4,464  

Portland General Electric
Media Contact:
Melanie Moir
Corporate Communications
Investor Contact:
Chris Liddle
Investor Relations

Source: Portland General Electric

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