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CMS Energy Corporation

CMS is a regulated utility in Michigan serving both electric and gas customers. CMS continues to be highly focused on systematically reducing O&M while using the cost saving to increase capex without raising the customer bill. Misguided expansion led to severe difficulties, downgrades and the suspension of the dividend during the Enron debacle of 2001-02 but the company has an entirely new management team. (24 Aug 2018)

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MEAG: Power and General Power Revenue Bonds

Municipals Analysis: 12 Dec 2018, 5:50 AM ET - On Wednesday the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia will issue $175 mn Power Revenue and $70 mn General Power Revenue Bonds which correspond and will be on a parity with its outstanding Project One and General Resolution Bonds.

Xcel Energy: Plans to go 100% Renewable by 2050

Worth Watching: 04 Dec 2018, 11:26 PM ET - Xcel Energy  (A3/BBB+) announced plans to serve all of its customers across eight Midwest and Rocky Mountain states with 100% renewable energy by 2050 and also expects to see an 80% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030 from 2005 levels.  The comp ..

PacGas & Edison Updates; Upgrading EIX Holdco/Opco

Company Analysis: 03 Dec 2018, 6:06 AM ET - We are upgrading Edison parent debt and SoCalEd opco debt from Market perform to Outperform based on wide bond spreads and balances sheets that can easily handle a $10 billion worst-case scenario.  

Oil & Gas: HY E&P Cash Flows at $50/bbl Oil

Sector Analysis: 28 Nov 2018, 4:10 AM ET - We now see HY E&P 2019 cash flows coming in 24% lower than previously expected at our new $50/WTI price deck ($65/WTI old).  We expect to see a mix of capex cuts, divestitures and incremental borrowings next year.

Oil & Gas: Slashing Oil Outlook, Downgrading E&Ps

Sector Analysis: 26 Nov 2018, 4:48 AM ET - We believe the recent 33% drop in oil prices is likely to be just the first leg of a deeper decline.  We are reducing our 2019 oil price view and recalibrating our IG and HY E&P investment recommendations to a more defensive position.

Utilities: 3Q Retained Cash Flows & Credit Metrics

Sector Analysis: 21 Nov 2018, 5:51 AM ET - U.S. utility companies generated ~$91 billion in cash flows before changes in working capital as of LTM 3Q18 and paid out ~$22 billion in dividends that left retained cash flows of $70 billion for a retained cash flow metric of 74%. 

PacGas: Positive PUC Talk; Bailout Cust. Impact

Worth Watching: 15 Nov 2018, 11:57 PM ET - PacGas (opco Baa3/BBB) got some much needed good news that caused the stock to rally after-hours when the head of the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) indicated on a BofA investor call that the commission supported having a strong ..

PacGas: Model Update and Questions/Thoughts

Company Analysis: 14 Nov 2018, 4:16 AM ET - We provide some thoughts on the latest PacGas situation, questions we want answered, and some modeling framework for whatever the ultimate claims come in at. 

PacGas: Downgrade to M/P; Need another Bill Passed

Company Analysis: 11 Nov 2018, 8:24 PM ET - We are downgrading PacGas opco bonds from Marketperform to Underperform based on the recent SB 901 bill not including 2018 wildfires and recent negative press reports on PCG equipment near the source and timing of the current fires. 

Utilities: Questions We Want Answered at EEI

Sector Analysis: 08 Nov 2018, 4:37 AM ET - We are heading to EEI in San Francisco for the annual investor conference and lay out in this report the bondholder questions we want answered from various management teams.

PacGas: Focus Turns to Rate-Case & Stress Test

Company Analysis: 05 Nov 2018, 3:31 PM ET - We reiterate our contrarian Outperform rating on PCG opco bonds given the uneventful 3Q earnings report. 

Utilities: 3Q FFO Tracker; Unchanged YoY So Far

Sector Analysis: 05 Nov 2018, 5:18 AM ET - We still have not seen any significant negative impact from tax reform from the over 15 utilities in our core coverage that have full 3Q cash flow statements available.

Framing Berkshire’s Nevada Utility Ballot Vote

Company Analysis: 01 Nov 2018, 10:05 PM ET - We don't see any concerns for bondholders and frame Nevada ballot question #3 for bondholders. 

ESG and Utilities: CSights Sector View and Ratings

Sector Analysis: 30 Oct 2018, 3:25 PM ET - We are following up the formal launch of the CreditSights ESG investing framework with a in-depth look at ESG issues in the utility sector.
Focused

Consumers Energy Co New Issue; Buy 10Y to +70

IG Note: 29 Oct 2018, 9:18 AM ET - CMS Energy Corp’s fully regulated opco Consumers Energy Co. is in the market today with $850mn 10Y and 30Y notes.

FirstEnergy: 3Q Follow-up; Conf. Call Q&A Notes

Company Analysis: 26 Oct 2018, 2:12 PM ET - We follow-up our earlier FirstEnergy (Baa3/BBB-) report with a summary and commentary on the conference call Q&A. 

FirstEnergy: Strong 3Q - Favorite Utility Holdco

Worth Watching: 25 Oct 2018, 10:27 PM ET - FirstEnergy  (Baa3/BBB-) reported LTM FFO/debt slipped slightly from 2Q but this is due to 4Q17 and 1Q18 still including positive cash flows from the now fully exited genco so the slip was fully expected and FE remains our top pick for U.S. uti ..
Focused

Utilities: CMS & AEP 3Q18, Conf Call Notes

Earnings Note: 25 Oct 2018, 1:49 PM ET - We provide a 3Q18 earnings update for fully regulated utilies CMS Energy (CMS: Baa1/BBB) and American Electric Power (AEP: Baa1/BBB+) as well as takeaway notes from the Q&A's.

HY Power: Yieldco Rel Val @ +230-310; Pros & Cons

Sector Analysis: 15 Oct 2018, 5:10 AM ET - We update our relative value picks/pans for the Yieldco sector and provide pros and cons for the sector as a whole and each company. 

US Strategy: What to Watch for on 3Q Earning Calls

Strategy Analysis: 11 Oct 2018, 4:37 AM ET - We surveyed our analyst teams for key sector level issues they will be paying close attention to with upcoming third quarter earnings calls beyond the typical sales, margins and earnings guidance. 

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