Dominion energy announces first-quarter 2018 earnings gas 69

#

Operating earnings for the three months ended March 31, 2018, were $741 million ( $1.14 per share), compared to operating earnings of $611 million ( $0.97 per share) for the same period in 2017. Operating earnings are defined as reported earnings adjusted for certain items.

The principal differences between reported earnings and operating earnings for the quarter were a charge associated with Virginia legislation enacted in March that requires one-time rate credits to utility customers and a market loss on our nuclear decommissioning trusts.

Dominion Energy uses operating earnings as the primary performance measurement of its earnings guidance and results for public communications with analysts and investors. Dominion Energy also uses operating earnings internally for budgeting, for reporting to the Board of Directors, for the company’s incentive compensation plans and for its targeted dividend payouts and other purposes. Dominion Energy management believes operating earnings provide a more meaningful representation of the company’s fundamental earnings power.

"Our first quarter results were very strong and came in at the top end of our guidance range of $0.95 to $1.15. Given the strong results for the first quarter, we now expect to produce results that are above the midpoint of our guidance range for the year.

"We continue to make progress on the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and the Supply Header Project, including construction of compressor stations in West Virginia, Pennsylvania and North Carolina. Both projects remain on schedule for completion in late 2019.

"Finally, we have reviewed our dividend growth rate assumptions with our Board and reconfirm our policy to increase the dividend 10% annually in 2018 and 2019. The growth rate in 2020 is expected to be between 6% and 10%, depending on the viability of Master Limited Partnership capital markets at that time."

Reported earnings decreased 24 cents per share as compared to first-quarter 2017. Business segment results and detailed descriptions of items included in reported earnings but excluded from operating earnings can be found on schedules 1, 2, and 3 of this release.

Operating earnings increased 17 cents per share as compared to first-quarter 2017 per share operating earnings. The increase is primarily attributable to the benefits of higher merchant generation margins, farmout transactions, normal weather in our regulated service territory and the impact of tax reform. Factors offsetting the increase include lower renewable energy investment tax credits and higher financing and share count.

Dominion Energy expects second-quarter 2018 operating earnings in the range of $0.70- $0.80 per share, compared to second-quarter 2017 operating earnings of $0.67 per share. Positive drivers include earnings contributions from Cove Point, a return to normal weather and the absence of a refueling outage at Millstone Power Station. The company expects negative drivers for the quarter to include lower investment tax credits, higher financing costs and a higher share count.

In providing its operating earnings guidance, the company notes that there could be differences between expected reported earnings and estimated operating earnings for matters such as, but not limited to, acquisitions, divestitures or changes in accounting principles. At this time, Dominion Energy management is not able to estimate the aggregate impact of these items on future period reported earnings.

Domestic callers should dial (877) 410-5657. International callers should dial (334) 323-9872. The passcode for the conference call is "Dominion." Participants should dial in 10 to 15 minutes prior to the scheduled start time. Members of the media also are invited to listen.

A replay of the conference call will be available beginning about 1 p.m. ET April 27 and lasting until 11 p.m. ET May 4. Domestic callers may access the recording by dialing (877) 919-4059. International callers should dial (334) 323-0140. The PIN for the replay is 67615976. Additionally, a replay of the webcast will be available on the investor information pages by the end of the day April 27.

Dominion Energy is one of the nation’s largest producers and transporters of energy, with a portfolio of approximately 26,000 megawatts of electric generation, 14,800 miles of natural gas transmission, gathering and storage pipeline, and 6,600 miles of electric transmission lines. Dominion Energy operates one of the nation’s largest natural gas storage systems with approximately 1 trillion cubic feet of storage capacity and serves nearly 6 million utility and retail energy customers. For more information about Dominion Energy, visit the company’s website at www.dominionenergy.com.

This release contains certain forward-looking statements, including forecasted operating earnings for second-quarter and full-year 2018 and beyond which are subject to various risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause actual results to differ include, but are not limited to: unusual weather conditions and their effect on energy sales to customers and energy commodity prices; extreme weather events and other natural disasters; federal, state and local legislative and regulatory developments; changes to federal, state and local environmental laws and regulations, including proposed carbon regulations; cost of environmental compliance; changes in enforcement practices of regulators relating to environmental standards and litigation exposure for remedial activities; capital market conditions, including the availability of credit and the ability to obtain financing on reasonable terms; fluctuations in interest rates; changes in rating agency requirements or credit ratings and their effect on availability and cost of capital; impacts of acquisitions, divestitures, transfers of assets by Dominion Energy to joint ventures or to Dominion Energy Midstream Partners, and retirements of assets based on asset portfolio reviews; the expected timing and likelihood of completion of the proposed acquisition of SCANA Corporation, including the ability to obtain the requisite approvals of SCANA’s shareholders and timing, receipt and terms and conditions of required regulatory approvals; receipt of approvals for, and timing of, closing dates for other acquisitions and divestitures; the execution of Dominion Energy Midstream Partners’ growth strategy; changes in demand for Dominion Energy’s services; additional competition in Dominion Energy’s industries; changes to regulated rates collected by Dominion Energy; changes in operating, maintenance and construction costs; timing and receipt of regulatory approvals necessary for planned construction or expansion projects and compliance with conditions associated with such regulatory approvals; the inability to complete planned construction projects within time frames initially anticipated; and the ability of Dominion Energy Midstream Partners to negotiate, obtain necessary approvals and consummate acquisitions from Dominion Energy and third-parties, and the impacts of such acquisitions. Other risk factors are detailed from time to time in Dominion Energy’s and Dominion Energy Midstream Partners‘ quarterly reports on Form 10-Q or most recent annual report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.