H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE:HRB) Q4 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript

Jun 12, 2018 • 04:30 pm ET


H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE:HRB) Q4 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript


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Good day. My name is Ian, and I will be your conference operator today. At this time, I would like to welcome everyone to the H&R Block Fiscal 2018 Earnings Call. All lines have been placed on mute to prevent any background noise. After the speaker's remarks, there will be a question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions) Thank you.

I would now like to turn the call over to Mr. Colby Brown, Vice President of Finance and Investor Relations. Sir, you may begin.

Colby Brown

Thank you, Ian. Good afternoon, everyone, and thank you for joining us to discuss our fiscal 2018 results. On the call today are Jeff Jones, our President and CEO, and Tony Bowen, our CFO.

We posted today's press release on the Investor Relations website at hrblock.com. Additionally, a presentation for viewing is available via the webcast and will also be posed to the investor relations website after this call. Some of the figures that we'll discuss today are presented on a non-GAAP basis. We've reconciled the comparable GAAP and non-GAAP figures in the schedules attached to our press release and presentation.

Before we begin our prepared remarks, I want to remind everyone that this call will include forward-looking statements as defined under the securities laws. Such statements are based on current information and management's expectations as of this date and are not guarantees of future performance. Forward-looking statements involve certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict. As a result, our actual outcomes and results could differ materially. You can learn more about these risks in our Form 10-K for Fiscal 2017 and our other SEC filings.

H&R Block undertakes no obligation to publicly update these risk factors or forward-looking statements. At the conclusion of our prepared remarks, we will have a Q&A session. During Q&A, we ask that participants limit themselves to one question with a follow-up, after which they may choose to jump back into the queue.

With that, I'll now turn the call over to Jeff.

Jeffrey J. Jones

Thank you, Colby. Good afternoon, everyone and thanks for joining us. Fiscal 2018 was a good year for H&R Block. We have a lot to cover, so let me outline the three areas we'll talk about today. First, I'll share my perspective on the tax season and our results. I'll then give an update on the enterprise strategy work, including key opportunities for improvement and the five pillars that will guide us over the next several years. I'll then highlight some of the strategic initiatives for 2019. Finally, Tony will review our 2018 financial results and we'll provide thoughts on our outlook for Fiscal '19.

Let me begin by looking back at tax season '18, starting with overall industries. Total US return growth was approximately 1.5%, as expected, with assisted returns growing 0.5%, and DIY returns increasing 2.5%. Consistent with prior years, industry results show a slight shift from assisted to DIY. However, like last year, it was moderate. We estimate the shift was only 40 to 50 basis