Tuesday, September 01, 2015

4099 I hate utility companies

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men.”
-- Plato --


Last Friday I had lunch with Piper.  I didn't want to talk business, but he did mention that he thought I'd be very happy with the way we weathered the storm.  I reiterated that I wasn't worried, hadn't been worried, and no I don't need details.  Corporate profits are still at an all-time high.  It'll all come back.

Today I got another report from Progress Energy.  I own a bunch of something called "Contingent Value Obligations".  The damn things are worthless.  We owned stock in Florida Progress, inherited from Jay's mother, and sixteen years ago somebody pulled a quick one, and we got CVOs for our stock.  This is an explanation:
In connection with the acquisition of Florida Progress Corporation, Progress Energy issued 98.6 million CVOs. Each CVO represents the right of the holder to receive contingent payments based on after-tax cash flows above certain levels of four synthetic fuel facilities purchased by subsidiaries of Florida Progress Corporation in October 1999. The CVOs are debt instruments and, under GAAP, are valued at market value. Unrealized gains and losses from changes in market value are recognized in earnings each quarter.  
We're supposed to get checks from the profits of the subsidiaries, when the profits are above a certain level.  Well, in the past sixteen years, due I believe to creative bookkeeping, those subsidiaries have yet to show a profit!  (Above that certain level.)  So all these years later, we/I have yet to see a penny from the "taking" of our stock.  There's got to be something wrong with that.  We're supposed to believe that Progress Energy is still hanging on to subsidiaries that aren't making a profit, and haven't in sixteen years?  Or perhaps that "level" was set ridiculously high?  Every so often I get a letter wherein PE offers to buy the CVOs.  For a few cents each.

Yeah, sure.

Um, no.  I can wait you bastards out.

No comments: