Significant Accounting Policies
|3 Months Ended
Feb. 29, 2012
|Significant Accounting Policies [Abstract]
|SIGNIFICANT ACCOUNTING POLICIES
Note 2. SIGNIFICANT ACCOUNTING POLICIES
A. Use of Estimates — The preparation of the consolidated financial statements in conformity with U.S. GAAP requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amount of assets and liabilities, recognition of distribution income and disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities at the date of the consolidated financial statements. Actual results could differ from those estimates.
B. Investment Securities — The Company’s investments in securities are classified as either trading or other equity securities:
C. Security Transactions and Fair Value — Security transactions are accounted for on the date the securities are purchased or sold (trade date). Realized gains and losses are reported on an identified cost basis.
For equity securities that are freely tradable and listed on a securities exchange or over-the-counter market, the Company fair values those securities at their last sale price on that exchange or over-the-counter market on the valuation date. If the security is listed on more than one exchange, the Company will use the price from the exchange that it considers to be the principal exchange on which the security is traded. Securities listed on the NASDAQ will be valued at the NASDAQ Official Closing Price, which may not necessarily represent the last sale price. If there has been no sale on such exchange or over-the-counter market on such day, the security will be valued at the mean between the last bid price and last ask price on such day.
An equity security of a publicly traded company acquired in a private placement transaction without registration is subject to restrictions on resale that can affect the security’s liquidity and fair value. Such securities that are convertible into or otherwise will become freely tradable will be valued based on the market value of the freely tradable security less an applicable discount. Generally, the discount will initially be equal to the discount at which the Company purchased the securities. To the extent that such securities are convertible or otherwise become freely tradable within a time frame that may be reasonably determined, an amortization schedule may be used to determine the discount.
The Company holds investments in illiquid securities, including debt and equity securities of privately-held companies. These investments generally are subject to restrictions on resale, have no established trading market and are fair valued on a quarterly basis. Because of the inherent uncertainty of valuation, the fair values of such investments, which are determined in accordance with procedures approved by the Company’s Board of Directors, may differ materially from the values that would have been used had a ready market existed for the investments. The Company’s Board of Directors may consider other methods of valuing investments as appropriate and in conformity with GAAP.
The Company determines fair value to be the price that would be received to sell an asset or paid to transfer a liability in an orderly transaction between market participants at the measurement date. The Company has determined the principal market, or the market in which the Company exits its private portfolio investments with the greatest volume and level of activity, to be
the private secondary market. Typically, private companies are bought and sold based on multiples of EBITDA, cash flows, net income, revenues, or in limited cases, book value.
For private company investments, value is often realized through a liquidity event of the entire company. Therefore, the value of the company as a whole (enterprise value) at the reporting date often provides the best evidence of the value of the investment and is the initial step for valuing the Company’s privately issued securities. For any one company, enterprise value may best be expressed as a range of fair values, from which a single estimate of fair value will be derived. In determining the enterprise value of a portfolio company, an analysis is prepared consisting of traditional valuation methodologies including market and income approaches. The Company considers some or all of the traditional valuation methods based on the individual circumstances of the portfolio company in order to derive its estimate of enterprise value.
The fair value of investments in private portfolio companies is determined based on various factors, including enterprise value, observable market transactions, such as recent offers to purchase a company, recent transactions involving the purchase or sale of the equity securities of the company, or other liquidation events. The determined equity values may be discounted when the Company has a minority position is subject to restrictions on resale, has specific concerns about the receptivity of the capital markets to a specific company at a certain time, or other comparable factors exist.
The Company undertakes a multi-step valuation process each quarter in connection with determining the fair value of private investments. An independent valuation firm has been engaged by the Company to provide independent, third-party valuation consulting services based on procedures that the Company has identified and may ask them to perform from time to time on all or a selection of private investments as determined by the Company. The multi-step valuation process is specific to the level of assurance that the Company requests from the independent valuation firm. For positive assurance, the process is as follows:
The following section describes the valuation methodologies used by the Company for estimating fair value for financial instruments not recorded at fair value as required under disclosure guidance related to the fair value of financial instruments.
Cash and Cash Equivalents — The carrying value of cash, amounts due from banks, federal funds sold and securities purchased under resale agreements approximates fair value.
Escrow Receivable — The fair value of the escrow receivable due the Company, which relates to the sale of International Resource Partners, LP, will be released upon satisfaction of certain post-closing obligations and/or the expiration of certain time periods (the shortest of which is 14 months from the April 2011 closing date of the sale).
Long-term Debt — The fair value of the Company’s long-term debt is calculated, for disclosure purposes, by discounting future cash flows by a rate equal to the Company’s current expected rate for an equivalent transaction. The estimated fair values of the Company’s financial instruments are shown in the table below. The carrying value of the line of credit approximates the fair value due to its short term nature.
D. Cash and Cash Equivalents — The Company maintains cash balances at financial institutions in amounts that regularly exceed FDIC insured limits. The Company’s cash equivalents are comprised of short-term, liquid money market instruments.
E. Accounts Receivable — Accounts receivable is presented at face value net of an allowance for doubtful accounts. Accounts are considered past due based on the terms of sale with the customers. The Company reviews accounts for collectability based on an analysis of specific outstanding receivables, current economic conditions and past collection experience. At February 29, 2012, management determined that an allowance for doubtful accounts related to our leases was not required. Lease payments by our major tenant as defined within Note 8, have remained timely and without lapse. Management also determined that an allowance for doubtful accounts related to other revenue items was not necessary at February 29, 2012.
F. Revenue and Other Income Recognition — Specific policies for the Company’s revenue and other income items are as follows:
For the period from December 1, 2011 through February 29, 2012, the Company estimated the allocation of investment income and distributions received from investment securities for the distributions received from its portfolio companies within the Consolidated Statements of Income. For this period, the Company has estimated approximately 7 percent as investment income and approximately 93 percent distributions received from investment securities. The return of capital portion of the distributions are reflected on the cash flow statements as “distributions received from investment securities.”
G. Cost of Sales — Included in the Company’s cost of sales are the amounts paid for gas and propane that are delivered to customers as well as the cost of material and labor related to the expansion of the natural gas distribution system.
H. Distributions to Stockholders — The amount of any quarterly distributions to stockholders will be determined by the Board of Directors. Distributions to stockholders are recorded on the ex-dividend date. The character of distributions made during the
year may differ from their ultimate characterization for federal income tax purposes. For the year ended November 30, 2011 and the period ended February 29, 2012 the source of the Company’s distributions for book purposes was 100 percent distributions received from investment securities. For the year ended November 30, 2011, the Company’s distributions for tax purposes were comprised of 100 percent qualified dividend income. The tax character of distributions paid to common stockholders in the current year will be determined subsequent to November 30, 2012.
I. Federal and State Income Taxation — The Company, as a corporation, is obligated to pay federal and state income tax on its taxable income. Currently, the highest regular marginal federal income tax rate for a corporation is 35 percent. The Company may be subject to a 20 percent federal alternative minimum tax on its federal alternative minimum taxable income to the extent that its alternative minimum tax exceeds its regular federal income tax.
The Company’s trading securities and other equity securities are limited partnerships or limited liability companies which are treated as partnerships for federal and state income tax purposes. As a limited partner, the Company reports its allocable share of taxable income in computing its own taxable income. The Company’s tax expense or benefit is included in the Consolidated Statements of Income. Deferred income taxes reflect the net tax effects of temporary differences between the carrying amounts of assets and liabilities for financial reporting purposes and the amounts used for income tax purposes. A valuation allowance is recognized if, based on the weight of available evidence, it is more likely than not that some portion or all of the deferred income tax asset will not be realized.
J. Leases — The Company includes assets subject to lease arrangements within Leased property, net of accumulated depreciation in the Consolidated Balance Sheet. Lease payments received are reflected on the Consolidated Statements of Income, net of amortization of any off market adjustments.
K. Long-Lived Assets and Intangibles — Property and equipment are stated at cost less accumulated depreciation. Depreciation is computed using the straight-line method over the estimated useful lives of the assets ranging from five to twenty years. Expenditures for repairs and maintenance are charged to operations as incurred, and improvements, which extend the useful lives of assets, are capitalized and depreciated over the remaining estimated useful life of the asset.
The Company initially records long-lived assets at their acquisition cost, unless the transaction is accounted for as a business combination. If the transaction is accounted for as a business combination, the Company allocates the purchase price to the acquired tangible and intangible assets and liabilities based on their estimated fair values. The Company determines the fair values of assets and liabilities based on discounted cash flow models using current market assumptions, appraisals, recent transactions involving similar assets or liabilities and/or other objective evidence, and depreciates the asset values over the estimated remaining useful lives.
In connection with these transactions, the Company may acquire long-lived assets that are subject to an existing lease contract with the seller or other lessee party and the Company may assume outstanding debt of the seller as part of the consideration paid. If, at the time of acquisition, the existing lease or debt contract is not at current market terms, the Company will record an asset or liability at the time of acquisition representing the amount by which the fair value of the lease or debt contract differs from its contractual value. Such amount is then amortized over the remaining contract term as an adjustment to the related lease revenue or interest expense.
L. Offering Costs — Offering costs related to the issuance of common stock are charged to additional paid-in capital when the stock is issued.
M. Recent Accounting Pronouncement — In May 2011, the FASB issued ASU No. 2011-04 “Amendments to Achieve Common Fair Value Measurement and Disclosure Requirements” in GAAP and the International Financial Reporting Standards (“IFRSs”). ASU No. 2011-04 amends FASB ASC Topic 820, Fair Value Measurements and Disclosures, to establish common requirements for measuring fair value and for disclosing information about fair value measurements in accordance with GAAP and IFRSs. ASU No. 2011-04 is effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2011 and for interim periods within those fiscal years. Management is currently evaluating the impact of these amendments and does not believe they will have a material impact on the Company’s consolidated financial statements.