S&P Global Inc. (NYSE:SPGI) Q4 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript

Feb 07, 2019 • 08:30 am ET


S&P Global Inc. (NYSE:SPGI) Q4 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript


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Good morning, and welcome to S&P Global's Fourth Quarter 2018 Earnings Conference Call. I would like to inform you that this call is being recorded for broadcast. All participants are in a listen only mode. We will open the conference to questions and answers after the presentation and instructions will follow at that time. To access the webcast and slides go to investor.spglobal.com (Operator Instructions).

I would now like to introduce Mr. Chip Merritt, Senior Vice President of Investor Relations for S&P Global. Sir, you may begin.

Chip Merritt

Good morning. Thank you for joining us for S&P Global's earnings call. Presenting on this morning's call are Doug Peterson, President and CEO and Ewout Steenbergen, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.

This morning we issued a news release with our fourth quarter 2018 results. If you need a copy of the release and financial schedules, they can be downloaded at investor.spglobal.com. In today's earnings release and during the conference call, we'll provide adjusted financial information. This information is provided to enable investors to make meaningful comparisons of the corporation's operating performance between periods and to view the corporation's business from the same perspective as management's. This earnings release contains exhibits that reconcile the difference between the non-GAAP measures and the comparable financial measures calculated in accordance with US GAAP.

Before we begin, I need to provide certain cautionary remarks about forward-looking statements. Except for historical information, the matters discussed in the teleconference may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including projections, estimates and descriptions of future events. Any such statements are based on current expectations and current economic conditions and are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from results anticipated in these forward-looking statements. In this regard, we direct listeners to the cautionary statements contained in our Form 10-Ks, 10-Qs and other periodic reports filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

I would also like to call your attention to a European Regulation. Any investor who has or expects to obtain ownership of 5% or more of S&P Global should give me a call to better understand the impact of this legislation on the investor and potentially the Company. We're aware that we do have some media representatives with us on the call. However, this call is intended for investors and we would ask that questions from the media be delivered to Soogyung Jordan at 212-438-2297.

At this time, I would like to turn the call over to Doug Peterson. Doug?

Douglas L. Peterson

Thank you, Chip. Good morning, and welcome to today's earnings call. As S&P Global team focused on Powering the Markets of the Future, a volatility and uncertainty returned to the markets in 2018. The causes were numerous: rising interest rates, trade negotiations, Brexit, and the unwinding of global monetary stimulus. And during the fourth quarter, this volatility and uncertainty impacted debt issuance and therefore our Ratings business. Fortunately, our remaining three businesses performed well