Use of non-GAAP financial measures
To supplement HP’s consolidated condensed financial statements presented on a GAAP basis, HP provides net revenue on a constant currency basis, non-GAAP total operating expense, non-GAAP operating margin, non-GAAP tax rate, non-GAAP net earnings, non-GAAP diluted net EPS, free cash flow, gross cash and net cash (debt). HP also provides forecasts of non-GAAP diluted net EPS and free cash flow.
These non-GAAP financial measures are not computed in accordance with, or as an alternative to, GAAP in the United States. Reconciliations of each of these non-GAAP financial measures to GAAP information are included in the tables above or elsewhere in the materials accompanying this news release.
Use and economic substance of non-GAAP financial measures
Net revenue on a constant currency basis excludes the effect of foreign currency exchange fluctuations calculated by translating current period revenues using monthly average exchange rates from the comparative period and excluding any hedging impact recognized in the current period. Non-GAAP operating margin is defined to exclude the effects of any amounts relating to restructuring and other charges, acquisition-related charges, defined benefit plan settlement charges, amortization of intangible assets and non-operating retirement-related credits/(charges). Non-GAAP net earnings and non-GAAP diluted net EPS consist of net earnings or diluted net EPS excluding those same charges, net tax indemnifications and US tax reform adjustment. In addition, non-GAAP net earnings and non-GAAP diluted net EPS are adjusted by the amount of additional taxes or tax benefits associated with each non-GAAP item and other tax benefits or charges as a consequence of the separation of Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company from HP Inc. (the “Separation”). HP’s management uses these non-GAAP financial measures for purposes of evaluating HP’s historical and prospective financial performance, as well as HP’s performance relative to its competitors. HP’s management also uses these non-GAAP measures to further its own understanding of HP’s segment operating performance. HP believes that excluding the items mentioned above for these non-GAAP financial measures allows HP’s management to better understand HP’s consolidated financial performance in relation to the operating results of HP’s segments, as HP’s management does not believe that the excluded items are reflective of ongoing operating results. More specifically, HP’s management excludes each of those items mentioned above for the following reasons:
- Restructuring and other charges are (i) costs associated with a formal restructuring plan and are primarily related to employee termination costs and benefits, costs of real estate consolidation and other non-labor charges; and (ii) other charges, which include non-recurring costs that are distinct from ongoing operational costs. HP excludes these restructuring and other charges (and any reversals of charges recorded in prior periods) for purposes of calculating these non-GAAP measures because HP believes that these historical costs do not reflect expected future operating expenses and do not contribute to a meaningful evaluation of HP's current operating performance or comparisons to HP's operating performance in other periods.
- HP incurs cost related to its acquisitions, which it would not have otherwise incurred as part of its operations. The charges are direct expenses such as third-party professional and legal fees, and integration-related costs, as well as non-cash adjustments to the fair value of certain acquired assets such as inventory. These charges related to acquisitions are inconsistent in amount and frequency and are significantly impacted by the timing and nature of HP's acquisitions. HP believes that eliminating such expenses for purposes of calculating these non-GAAP measures facilitates a more meaningful evaluation of HP's current operating performance and comparisons to HP's past operating performance.
- HP incurs charges relating to the amortization of intangible assets. Those charges are included in HP’s GAAP earnings, operating margin, net earnings and diluted net EPS. Such charges are significantly impacted by the timing and magnitude of HP’s acquisitions and any related impairment charges. Consequently, HP excludes these charges for purposes of calculating these non-GAAP measures to facilitate a more meaningful evaluation of HP’s current operating performance and comparisons to HP’s operating performance in other periods.
- Non-operating retirement-related credits/(charges) includes certain market-related factors such as interest cost, expected return on plan assets, amortized actuarial gains or losses, and impacts from other market-related factors associated with HP’s defined benefit pension and post-retirement benefit plans. The market-driven retirement-related adjustments are primarily due to the changes in pension plan assets and liabilities which are tied to financial market performance and HP considers these adjustments to be outside the operational performance of the business. Non-operating retirement-related credits/(charges) also include certain plan curtailments, settlements and special termination benefits related to HP’s defined benefit pension and post-retirement benefit plans. HP believes that eliminating such adjustments for purposes of calculating non-GAAP measures facilitates a more meaningful evaluation of HP's current operating performance and provides better transparency into the segment operating results.
- As part of the Separation, HP evaluates all tax uncertain positions to determine the indemnification amounts under the Tax Matters Agreement with Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company and records the adjustments as net tax indemnifications amounts for the quarter. HP excludes these adjustments for the purposes of calculating these non-GAAP measures to facilitate a more meaningful evaluation of HP’s current operating performance and comparisons to HP’s operating performance in other periods.
- HP incurred defined benefit plan settlement charges relating to the U.S. HP pension plan. The charges are associated with the net settlement and remeasurement resulting from voluntary lump sum payments offered to certain terminated vested participants. HP excludes these charges for the purposes of calculating these non-GAAP measures to facilitate a more meaningful evaluation of HP’s current operating performance and comparisons to HP’s operating performance in other periods.
- As part of the Separation, HP recorded several Separation-related items including: the reversal of a previously recorded valuation allowance, the write-off of specific deferred taxes providing no continued benefit to HP and the entry of certain Separation-related deferred tax expense. HP believes that eliminating these amounts for purposes of calculating non-GAAP net earnings facilitates a more meaningful comparison of HP’s net earnings to other periods, as HP’s management does not believe that the excluded items are reflective of ongoing operating results.
- HP recorded US tax reform adjustment as one-time charges relating to the enactment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. These charges encompass several elements, including the reversal of previously accrued taxes on unrepatriated overseas profits, a one-time transition tax on accumulated overseas profits and the revaluation of deferred tax assets and liabilities to the new US tax rate. These charges are provisional based on reasonable estimates. Changes to these estimates, new guidance issued by regulators and new positions taken or elections made by HP may materially impact provision for income taxes and effective tax rate in the period in which the adjustments are made. HP expects the accounting for the tax effects of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will be completed during the measurement period, which should not extend beyond the fourth fiscal quarter of 2018. HP believes these adjustments facilitate a better evaluation of its current operating performance and comparisons to HP's past operating results.
Free cash flow is a non-GAAP measure that is defined as cash flow from operations less net capital expenditures. Net capital expenditures is defined as investments in property, plant and equipment less proceeds from the sale of property, plant and equipment. Gross cash is a non-GAAP measure that is defined as cash and cash equivalents plus short-term investments and certain long-term investments that may be liquidated within 90 days pursuant to the terms of existing put options or similar rights. HP’s management uses free cash flow and gross cash for the purpose of determining the amount of cash available for investment in HP’s businesses, repurchasing stock and other purposes. HP’s management also uses free cash flow and gross cash to evaluate HP’s historical and prospective liquidity. Because gross cash includes liquid assets that are not included in cash and cash equivalents, HP believes that gross cash provides a helpful assessment of HP’s liquidity. Because free cash flow includes the effect of investment in property, plant and equipment and proceeds from the sale of property, plant and equipment that are not reflected in net cash provided by operating activities, HP believes that free cash flow provides a more accurate and complete assessment of HP’s liquidity and capital resources. Net cash (debt) is defined as gross cash less gross debt after adjusting the effect of unamortized premium/discount on debt issuance, debt issuance costs and unrealized gains/losses on fair value hedges and interest rate swaps.
Material limitations associated with use of non-GAAP financial measures
These non-GAAP financial measures may have limitations as analytical tools, and these measures should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for analysis of HP’s results as reported under GAAP. Some of the limitations in relying on these non-GAAP financial measures are: