Murphy USA Inc. (NYSE:MUSA) Q3 2017 Earnings Conference Call Transcript

Nov 02, 2017 • 11:00 am ET

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Murphy USA Inc. (NYSE:MUSA) Q3 2017 Earnings Conference Call Transcript

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Presentation
Operator
Operator

Good morning. My name is Christina, and I will be your conference operator today. At this time, I would like to welcome everyone to the Murphy USA Third Quarter 2017 Earnings Conference Call.

(Operator Instructions)

Christian Pikul, Director of IR, you may begin your conference.

Executive
Christian Pikul

Thank you, Christina. Good morning, everyone. Thanks for joining us today.

With me are Andrew Clyde, President and CEO; Mindy West, EVP and CFO; and Donnie Smith, VP and Controller. After some opening comments from Andrew, Mindy will provide an overview of the financial results. And after some closing comments and a discussion of our 2017 guidance, we will open up the call to Q&A.

(Forward-Looking Cautionary Statements)

With that, I will turn the call over to Andrew.

Executive
Andrew Clyde

Thank you, Christian. Good morning, and welcome to Murphy USA's Third Quarter 2017 Conference Call.

I want to start today's call by discussing Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, whose impact and devastation to the citizens of Texas and Florida was also felt here in El Dorado and nationwide. Our first priority as these crises unfolded was to coordinate and ensure the safety of our employees. All members of the Murphy USA family were safe and accounted for within 24 to 48 hours. And importantly, we retained 100% of our store managers and assistant store managers and 95% of our hourly cashiers, who quickly reopened most of our locations generally within one to five days of closure. Our culture of safety also played a role in determining when it was appropriate for employees to safely return to work; and reopen stores for our customers, many of whom also faced threat on life and property. During Harvey, we closed approximately 80 stores in the Houston area, roughly 90% of which were operational within five days of the storm's passing. All of the remaining stores returned to service within three weeks and experienced minimal damage. When Irma hit Florida with equal force, both the general population and our people were better prepared to literally weather the storm, as we were able to reopen 100% of our impacted stores within four days, including stores in communities without power. Our preparation for the storms, the retention of our people and the ability to reopen quickly for our customers reflects our values as a company. We're able to provide need and assistance for employees through onetime grants; and through our need fund, which employees and suppliers have generously supported. We also took special steps to work with first responders, including staging generators in anticipation of power outages and prioritizing fuel supply to source on evacuation routes in and out of the affected areas.

As you have no doubt seen in our release, the per-store comps were noticeably impacted by these events. There are several points I would like to draw your attention to with respect to the impact on third quarter results. First, the disruption and destruction of the storms themselves materially impacted our per-store volumes. Second, we know consumer behavior differed most noticeably around