SOURCE: H & R Block

H & R Block

June 08, 2015 16:05 ET

H&R Block Announces Fiscal 2015 Results

KANSAS CITY, MO--(Marketwired - June 08, 2015) - H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB)

  • Total revenues increased $54 million, or 1.8%, to $3.1 billion1
  • Adjusted EBITDA margin of 30.8% consistent with prior year
  • Earnings per share from continuing operations of $1.75 3

H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB), the world's largest consumer tax services provider, today released its financial results for the fiscal year ended April 30, 2015. Revenues increased for the third consecutive year to $3.1 billion, or 1.8%, driven by successful implementation of the company's pricing strategy and improved return mix in its retail locations, improved digital do-it-yourself (DIY) volume and monetization, and the impact of franchise acquisitions. This was partially offset by volume declines in its retail locations and negative impact of foreign exchange rate fluctuations. The company's EBITDA margin of 30.8% was consistent with prior year. Earnings per share from continuing operations decreased 3.3% to $1.75.

Returns prepared by and through H&R Block declined 0.1% to 24.2 million worldwide. This was primarily due to a 4.4% decrease in U.S. assisted tax returns prepared, mainly driven by the continued decline of returns containing the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and, to a lesser extent, the second-year impact of the company's decision to discontinue the free federal 1040EZ promotion. The company believes the decline in volume was also exacerbated by the impact of industry-wide fraud. H&R Block's DIY returns, including desktop and online, improved 8% due to product enhancements and improved consumer awareness.

"We saw positive changes in our assisted return mix, our DIY business did very well, both from a volume and a revenue perspective, and our tax professionals delivered expert ACA advice to their clients," said Bill Cobb, H&R Block's president and chief executive officer. "I'm pleased that despite the decline in volume we delivered top line revenue growth for the third consecutive year and achieved strong margins."

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) brought increased complexity to the tax return preparation process for the first time during the 2015 tax season. Confusion, incorrect or delayed 1095-A information documents, and overall anxiety regarding refund impacts modified the timing of taxpayer filings and for some, materially impacted their refunds. Approximately 16% of H&R Block's clients were directly impacted by the ACA, with the majority of such clients being those without qualifying insurance coverage and either paying the required penalty or obtaining an exemption. Increasing Marketplace enrollment, higher penalties, and new documentation requirements will impact taxpayer behavior for several years to come. H&R Block made significant investments in training, systems and marketing to ensure it is well positioned to serve taxpayers impacted by the ACA going forward.

During this tax season, the industry saw the increasing trend of concern around fraud. While H&R Block has been advocating for actions to address fraud for several years, meaningful attention is now being paid within the tax preparation industry to issues such as tax identify theft and improper EITC payments that continue to cost taxpayers billions of dollars. H&R Block has led the fight against tax fraud and remains focused on advocating for change that benefits consumers by strengthening anti-fraud measures. Commonsense measures such as consistent standards for all tax filings and mandatory certification for paid tax preparers, among other actions, are necessary to address these issues.

"This has been a challenging tax season impacted by changes in the timing of tax filings, the first year implementation of the ACA and the continued and growing issue of fraud in our industry," added Cobb. "We're focused on the future, and by investing in our infrastructure through enhanced training, the implementation of new tax preparation software in our assisted channel, and an upgrade of our offices, H&R Block is well positioned for success."

Fiscal 2015 Results From Continuing Operations

"We increased revenues for the third consecutive year and continued to deliver strong bottom line results," said Greg Macfarlane, H&R Block's chief financial officer. "Additionally, our ongoing focus on productivity has allowed us to invest significantly back into the business while achieving targeted EBITDA margins and strong free cash flow."

   Actual  Adjusted
(in millions, except EPS)  Fiscal Year 2015  Fiscal Year 2014  Fiscal Year 2015  Fiscal Year 2014
Revenue  $ 3,079  $ 3,024  $ 3,079  $ 3,024
EBITDA  $ 949  $ 940  $ 951  $ 932
Pretax Income  $ 743  $ 767  $ 745  $ 759
Net Income  $ 487  $ 500  $ 488  $ 495
Weighted-Avg. Shares - Diluted   277.1   276.0   277.1   276.0
EPS  $ 1.75  $ 1.81  $ 1.75  $ 1.79

Business Segment Financial Results and Highlights

Tax Services

  • Revenues increased 1.9% to $3.1 billion, driven by improvements in tax return mix in both the company's assisted channel and DIY products, pricing increases, the impact of the franchise acquisitions, and DIY unit growth. Lower assisted return volumes and the impact of foreign currency translation partially offset the revenue increase.
  • U.S. assisted tax preparation fees and royalties increased 2.3% to $2.1 billion, primarily due to improved return mix, pricing increases, and the impact of franchise acquisitions, offset partially by lower return volumes.
  • DIY tax preparation fees increased 12.1% to $228.4 million due to client growth and improved monetization.
  • Revenues related to Tax Plus products (H&R Block Emerald Advance® Line of Credit, refund transfers (formerly known as refund anticipation checks), H&R Block Emerald Prepaid MasterCard®, Peace of Mind®, and Tax Identity Shield™) declined 4.3% to $413.1 million, as lower return volume negatively impacted product sales.
  • International return volume increased 3.9% and revenues increased 7.8% on a local currency basis.
  • On a U.S. dollar basis, international tax preparation revenues increased 3.8% due to the negative impact of foreign exchange totaling $17.9 million.
  • Total operating expenses increased 5.1% to $2.2 billion, mainly due to increased depreciation and amortization, compensation, marketing, and training and other costs related to the implementation of assisted tax software.
  • Adjusted non-GAAP pretax income declined 3.6% to $825.5 million.


  • Pretax loss improved by $18.8 million to $80.4 million, primarily as a result of lower interest expense due to the repayment of a $400 million note in October 2014 and reduced legal and consulting fees.
  • Effective tax rate from continuing operations was 34.5%.

Discontinued Operations

  • Sand Canyon Corporation (SCC), a separate legal entity from H&R Block, Inc., continued to engage in constructive settlement discussions with counterparties that have made a significant majority of previously denied representation and warranty claims.
  • During the third quarter, SCC entered into a settlement agreement to resolve certain of these claims. The settlement amount was fully covered by prior accruals and was paid in the fiscal third quarter.
  • SCC's accrual for contingent losses related to representation and warranty claims was $150 million at April 30.

Balance Sheet

  • As of April 30, the company had unrestricted cash of $2.0 billion and total outstanding debt of $506.1 million.
  • Shareholder equity at April 30 was $1.8 billion.

A previously announced quarterly cash dividend of 20 cents per share is payable on July 1, 2015 to shareholders of record as of June 15, 2015. The July 1 dividend payment will be H&R Block's 211th consecutive quarterly dividend since the company went public in 1962.

Fiscal 2015 Conference Call
In conjunction with the release of the fiscal 2015 results, the company will host a conference call at 4:30 p.m. Eastern time on June 8, 2015 for analysts, institutional investors, and shareholders to discuss the fiscal 2015 results, future outlook and a general business update. To access the call, please dial the number below approximately 10 minutes prior to the scheduled starting time:

U.S./Canada (866) 872-0323 or International (443) 842-7595
Conference ID: 8986376

The call will also be webcast in a listen-only format for the media and public. The link to the webcast can be accessed directly at

A replay of the call will be available beginning at 7:30 p.m. Eastern time on June 8, 2015, and continuing until July 8, 2015, by dialing (855) 859-2056 (U.S./Canada) or (404) 537-3406 (International). The conference ID is 8986376. The webcast will be available for replay June 9, 2015 at

About H&R Block
H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB) is the world's largest consumer tax services provider. More than 680 million tax returns have been prepared worldwide by and through H&R Block since 1955. In fiscal 2015, H&R Block had annual revenues of nearly $3.1 billion with 24.2 million tax returns prepared worldwide. Tax return preparation services are provided by professional tax preparers in approximately 12,000 company-owned and franchise retail tax offices worldwide, and through H&R Block tax software products. H&R Block Bank provides affordable banking products and services. For more information, visit the H&R Block Newsroom at

About Non-GAAP Financial Information
This press release and the accompanying tables include non-GAAP financial information. For a description of these non-GAAP financial measures, including the reasons management uses each measure, and reconciliations of these non-GAAP financial measures to the most directly comparable financial measures prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles, please see the section of the accompanying tables titled "Non-GAAP Financial Information."

Forward-Looking Statements
This press release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the securities laws. Forward-looking statements can be identified by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts. They often include words or variation of words such as "expects," "anticipates," "intends," "plans," "believes," "seeks," "estimates," "projects," "forecasts," "targets," "would," "will," "should," "could" or "may" or other similar expressions. Forward-looking statements provide management's current expectations or predictions of future conditions, events or results. All statements that address operating performance, events or developments that we expect or anticipate will occur in the future are forward-looking statements. They may include estimates of revenues, income, earnings per share, capital expenditures, dividends, liquidity, capital structure or other financial items, descriptions of management's plans or objectives for future operations, products or services, or descriptions of assumptions underlying any of the above. All forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made and reflect the company's good faith beliefs, assumptions and expectations, but they are not guarantees of future performance or events. Furthermore, the company disclaims any obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement to reflect changes in underlying assumptions, factors, or expectations, new information, data or methods, future events or other changes, except as required by law. By their nature, forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those suggested by the forward-looking statements. Factors that might cause such differences include, but are not limited to, a variety of economic, competitive and regulatory factors, many of which are beyond the company's control and which are described in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended April 30, 2014 in the section entitled "Risk Factors," as well as additional factors we may describe from time to time in other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. You should understand that it is not possible to predict or identify all such factors and, consequently, you should not consider any such list to be a complete set of all potential risks or uncertainties.

1 All amounts in this release are unaudited. Unless otherwise noted, all comparisons refer to the current period compared to the corresponding prior year period.
2 EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) is a non-GAAP financial measure, which the company finds relevant when measuring its performance. The company also reports adjusted financial performance, which it believes is a better indication of the company's recurring operations. See "About Non-GAAP Financial Information" below for more information regarding financial measures not prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounts principles (GAAP).
3 All per share amounts are based on fully diluted shares.

KEY OPERATING RESULTS  (unaudited, in 000s - except per share data)
   Year ended April 30,
   Revenues  Income (loss)
   2015  2014  2015  2014
Tax Services  $ 3,056,299  $ 2,999,460  $ 823,236    $ 866,367  
Corporate and Eliminations   22,359   24,835   (80,431 )   (99,251 )
   $ 3,078,658  $ 3,024,295   742,805     767,116  
Income taxes           256,061     267,019  
Net income from continuing operations           486,744     500,097  
Net loss from discontinued operations           (13,081 )   (24,940 )
Net income          $ 473,663    $ 475,157  
Basic earnings (loss) per share:                
 Continuing operations          $ 1.77    $ 1.82  
 Discontinued operations           (0.05 )   (0.09 )
 Consolidated          $ 1.72    $ 1.73  
Basic shares           275,033     273,830  
Diluted earnings (loss) per share:                
 Continuing operations          $ 1.75    $ 1.81  
 Discontinued operations           (0.04 )   (0.09 )
 Consolidated          $ 1.71    $ 1.72  
Diluted shares           277,136     276,027  
CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS  (unaudited, in 000s - except per share data)
As of April 30,  2015  2014
 Cash and cash equivalents  $ 2,007,190    $ 2,185,307  
 Cash and cash equivalents - restricted   91,972     115,319  
 Receivables, net   167,964     191,618  
 Deferred tax assets and income taxes receivable   174,267     135,327  
 Prepaid expenses and other current assets   70,283     62,940  
 Investments in available-for-sale securities   439,625     423,495  
  Total current assets   2,951,301     3,114,006  
 Mortgage loans held for investment, net   239,338     268,428  
 Property and equipment, net   311,387     304,911  
 Intangible assets, net   432,142     355,622  
 Goodwill   441,831     436,117  
 Deferred tax assets and income taxes receivable   13,461     47,247  
 Other assets   125,960     167,198  
  Total assets  $ 4,515,420    $ 4,693,529  
 Customer banking deposits  $ 744,241    $ 769,785  
 Accounts payable and accrued expenses   231,322     222,489  
 Accrued salaries, wages and payroll taxes   144,744     167,032  
 Accrued income taxes   434,684     406,655  
 Current portion of long-term debt   790     400,637  
 Deferred revenue and other current liabilities   322,508     346,518  
  Total current liabilities   1,878,289     2,313,116  
 Long-term debt   505,298     505,837  
 Deferred tax liabilities and reserves for uncertain tax positions   142,586     157,465  
 Deferred revenue and other noncurrent liabilities   156,298     160,562  
  Total liabilities   2,682,471     3,136,980  
 Common stock, no par, stated value $.01 per share   3,166     3,166  
 Additional paid-in capital   783,793     766,654  
 Accumulated other comprehensive income   1,740     5,177  
 Retained earnings   1,836,442     1,589,297  
 Less treasury shares, at cost   (792,192 )   (807,745 )
  Total stockholders' equity   1,832,949     1,556,549  
   Total liabilities and stockholders' equity  $ 4,515,420    $ 4,693,529  
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS  (unaudited, in 000s - except per share amounts)
Year ended April 30,  2015  2014
 Service revenues  $ 2,651,057    $ 2,570,273  
 Royalty, product and other revenues   334,737     355,928  
 Interest income   92,864     98,094  
    3,078,658     3,024,295  
 Cost of revenues: (1)        
  Compensation and benefits   852,480     816,623  
  Occupancy and equipment   378,624     362,782  
  Provision for bad debt and loan losses   74,993     80,007  
  Depreciation and amortization   111,861     93,259  
  Other   212,532     219,706  
      1,630,490     1,572,377  
 Selling, general and administrative:        
  Marketing and advertising   273,682     238,763  
  Compensation and benefits   238,527     249,779  
  Depreciation and amortization   47,943     22,345  
  Other selling, general and administrative   93,350     122,541  
      653,502     633,428  
   Total operating expenses   2,283,992     2,205,805  
Other income   1,314     36,315  
Interest expense on borrowings (1)   (45,246 )   (55,279 )
Other expenses   (7,929 )   (32,410 )
Income from continuing operations before income taxes   742,805     767,116  
Income taxes   256,061     267,019  
Net income from continuing operations   486,744     500,097  
Net loss from discontinued operations   (13,081 )   (24,940 )
NET INCOME  $ 473,663    $ 475,157  
 Continuing operations  $ 1.77    $ 1.82  
 Discontinued operations   (0.05 )   (0.09 )
 Consolidated  $ 1.72    $ 1.73  
 Continuing operations  $ 1.75    $ 1.81  
 Discontinued operations   (0.04 )   (0.09 )
 Consolidated  $ 1.71    $ 1.72  
(1) The 2014 presentation of interest expense from borrowings has been restated to correct errors in presentation, whereby we reclassified such interest expense from cost of revenues to a separate caption.
Year ended April 30,  2015  2014
 Purchases of available-for-sale securities   (90,581 )   (45,158 )
 Maturities of and payments received on available-for-sale securities   91,878     107,101  
 Principal payments on mortgage loans held for investment, net   23,886     46,664  
 Capital expenditures   (123,158 )   (147,011 )
 Payments made for business acquisitions, net of cash acquired   (113,252 )   (68,428 )
 Proceeds received on notes receivable   -     64,865  
 Franchise loans:        
  Loans funded   (49,695 )   (63,960 )
  Payments received   90,636     87,220  
 Other, net   21,354     29,397  
   Net cash provided by (used in) investing activities   (148,932 )   10,690  
 Repayments of commercial paper   (1,049,136 )   (316,000 )
 Proceeds from issuance of commercial paper   1,049,136     316,000  
 Repayments of long-term debt   (400,000 )   -  
 Customer banking deposits, net   (28,544 )   (163,952 )
 Dividends paid   (219,960 )   (218,980 )
 Repurchase of common stock, including shares surrendered   (10,449 )   (6,106 )
 Proceeds from exercise of stock options   16,522     28,246  
 Other, net   (3,376 )   (4,138 )
  Net cash used in financing activities   (645,807 )   (364,930 )
Effects of exchange rate changes on cash   (9,986 )   (17,618 )
Net increase (decrease) in cash and cash equivalents   (178,117 )   437,723  
Cash and cash equivalents at beginning of the year   2,185,307     1,747,584  
Cash and cash equivalents at end of the year  $ 2,007,190    $ 2,185,307  
 Income taxes paid, net of refunds received  $ 236,624    $ 155,735  
 Interest paid on borrowings   44,847     55,221  
 Interest paid on deposits   736     2,162  
 Transfers of foreclosed loans to other assets   4,805     7,644  
 Accrued additions to property and equipment   14,282     5,257  
 Conversion of investment in preferred stock to available-for-sale common stock   5,000     -  
 Transfer of mortgage loans held for investment to held for sale   -     7,608  
TAX SERVICES - FINANCIAL RESULTS  (unaudited, amounts in 000s)
Year ended April 30,  2015  2014
Tax preparation fees:      
 U.S. assisted  $ 1,865,438    $ 1,794,043  
 International   207,772     200,152  
 U.S. digital   228,416     203,699  
    2,301,626     2,197,894  
Royalties   292,743     316,153  
Revenues from Refund Transfers   171,094     181,394  
Revenues from Emerald Card®   103,300     103,730  
Revenues from Peace of Mind® guarantees   81,551     89,685  
Interest and fee income on Emerald Advance   57,202     56,877  
Other   48,783     53,727  
  Total revenues   3,056,299     2,999,460  
Compensation and benefits:        
 Field wages   731,309     702,312  
 Other wages   158,463     169,583  
 Benefits and other compensation   167,178     158,203  
    1,056,950     1,030,098  
Occupancy and equipment   375,392     363,590  
Marketing and advertising   271,866     237,214  
Depreciation and amortization   159,787     115,488  
Bad debt   75,003     71,733  
Supplies   42,808     36,454  
Other   242,054     260,676  
   Total operating expenses   2,223,860     2,115,253  
Other income   799     10,664  
Interest expense on borrowings   (2,067 )   (2,137 )
Other expenses   (7,935 )   (26,367 )
Pretax income  $ 823,236    $ 866,367  
Year ended April 30,  2015  2014  % Change
U.S. Tax Returns Prepared: (1)         
 H&R Block Company-Owned Operations  8,327  8,744  (4.8 )%
 H&R Block Franchise Operations  4,688  4,866  (3.7 )%
  Total H&R Block Assisted (3)  13,015  13,610  (4.4 )%
 H&R Block Desktop (4)  2,168  2,026  7.0 %
 H&R Block Online (5)  4,765  4,389  8.6 %
  Total H&R Block DIY  6,933  6,415  8.1 %
 H&R Block Free File Alliance  676  767  (11.9 )%
   Total H&R Block U.S. Returns  20,624  20,792  (0.8 )%
International Tax Returns Prepared:         
 Canada (2)  2,658  2,642  0.6 %
 Australia  768  746  2.9 %
 Other  115  21  447.6 %
  Total International Tax Returns  3,541  3,409  3.9 %
Tax Returns Prepared Worldwide  24,165  24,201  (0.1 )%
(1) Prior year numbers have been reclassified between company-owned and franchise for offices which were refranchised or repurchased by the company.
(2) In fiscal years 2015 and 2014, the end of the Canadian tax season was extended from April 30 to May 5. Tax returns prepared in Canada in fiscal years 2015 and 2014 includes approximately 131 thousand and 141 thousand returns, respectively, in both company-owned and franchise offices which were accepted by the client after April 30. The revenues related to these returns were recognized in fiscal years 2016 and 2015, respectively.
(3) An assisted return is defined as an individual tax return that has been accepted by the client who has either paid for tax preparation services or settled with a refund transfer. It also includes extensions and business returns.
(4) A desktop return is defined as an individual tax return that has been electronically filed and accepted by the IRS.
(5) An online return is defined as an individual tax return that has been electronically filed and accepted by the IRS or purchased with a credit card and printed for mailing.
Year ended April 30,  2015  2014
   EBITDA  Earnings  EBITDA  Earnings
As reported - from continuing operations  $ 948,537    $ 486,744    $ 940,108    $ 500,097  
 Loss contingencies - litigation   (3,936 )   (3,936 )   1,844     1,844  
 Severance   6,699     6,699     5,204     5,204  
 Professional fees related to HRB Bank transaction   238     238     2,747     2,747  
 Losses (gains) on AFS securities   124     124     (5,836 )   (5,836 )
 Gain on sales of tax offices/businesses   (656 )   (656 )   (11,738 )   (11,738 )
 Tax effect on adjustments   -     (963 )   -     3,045  
    2,469     1,506     (7,779 )   (4,734 )
As adjusted - from continuing operations  $ 951,006    $ 488,250    $ 932,329    $ 495,363  
Adjusted EPS      $ 1.75        $ 1.79  
   Year ended April 30,        
EBITDA  2015  2014        
Net income - as reported  $ 473,663    $ 475,157          
Add back :                
 Discontinued operations   13,081     24,940          
 Income taxes   256,061     267,019          
 Interest expense   45,928     57,388          
 Depreciation and amortization   159,804     115,604          
    474,874     464,951          
EBITDA from continuing operations  $ 948,537    $ 940,108          
   Year ended April 30,        
Supplemental Information  2015  2014        
Stock-based compensation expense:                
 Pretax  $ 26,068    $ 20,058          
 After-tax   15,918     12,204          
Amortization of intangible assets:                
 Pretax  $ 58,521    $ 30,895          
 After-tax   35,736     18,798          


The accompanying press release contains non-GAAP financial measures. Non-GAAP financial measures should not be considered as a substitute for, or superior to, measures of financial performance prepared in accordance with GAAP. Because these measures are not measures of financial performance under GAAP and are susceptible to varying calculations, they may not be comparable to similarly titled measures for other companies.

We consider non-GAAP financial measures to be a useful metric for management and investors to evaluate and compare the ongoing operating performance of our business on a consistent basis across reporting periods, as it eliminates the effect of items that are not indicative of our core operating performance.

The following are descriptions of adjustments we make for our non-GAAP financial measures:

  • We exclude losses from settlements and estimated contingent losses from litigation and favorable reserve adjustments. This does not include legal defense costs.
  • We exclude non-cash charges to adjust the carrying values of goodwill, intangible assets, other long-lived assets and investments to their estimated fair values.
  • We exclude severance and other restructuring charges in connection with the termination of personnel, closure of offices and related costs.
  • We exclude the gains and losses on business dispositions, including investment banking, legal and accounting fees from both business dispositions and acquisitions.
  • We exclude the gains and losses on extinguishment of debt.

We may consider whether other significant items that arise in the future should also be excluded from our non-GAAP financial measures.

We measure the performance of our business using a variety of metrics, including EBITDA, adjusted EBITDA and adjusted income of continuing operations. Adjusted EBITDA and adjusted income eliminate the impact of items that we do not consider indicative of our core operating performance and, we believe, provide meaningful information to assist in understanding our financial results, analyzing trends in our underlying business, and assessing our prospects for future performance. We also use EBITDA and income of continuing operations, each subject to permitted adjustments, as performance metrics in incentive compensation calculations for our employees.

We no longer include adjustments for discrete tax items in reporting our non-GAAP measures. Non-GAAP measures previously reported in fiscal year 2014 have been restated to conform with our current reporting practice.

Contact Information

  • For Further Information

    Investor Relations:
    Colby Brown
    (816) 854-4559
    Email contact

    Media Relations:
    Gene King
    (816) 854-4672
    Email contact