2015-16 SaskEnergy Annual Report

10. Financial risk management Through the normal course of business, the Corporation has exposure to market risk (natural gas price risk, interest rate risk and foreign currency risk), liquidity risk and credit risk related to its financial and derivative instruments. The Board of Directors, through the Audit and Finance Committee, has the overall responsibility for the establishment and oversight of the Corporation’s risk management efforts. The Corporation’s risk management policies and strategies, approved by the Board of Directors and reviewed regularly by the Audit and Finance Committee, provide the framework within which the Corporation may use financial and derivative instruments to manage its risks. The Corporation’s significant risk management policies include the Corporate Derivatives Policy, the Commodity Risk Management Policy, the Corporate Debt and Interest Rate Risk Management Policy, the Foreign Currency Risk Management Policy and the Corporate Credit Risk Management Policy. The objectives, policies and processes for managing risk were consistent with the prior period. a. Natural gas price risk The Corporation purchases natural gas for resale to its customers. While natural gas is purchased at fluctuating market prices, the Corporation sells natural gas to customers at a fixed commodity rate that is reviewed semi-annually. As part of its natural gas price risk management, the Corporation uses derivative instruments to manage the price of the natural gas it buys. The Corporation’s objective is to reduce cost of gas variability and to have rates that are competitive to other utilities. The Corporation also purchases and sells natural gas in the open market to generate incremental income through its gas marketing activities. The purchase or sale price of natural gas may be fixed within the contract or referenced to a floating index price. When the price is referenced to a floating index price, natural gas derivative instruments may be used to fix the settlement amount. The types of natural gas derivative instruments the Corporation may use for price risk management include natural gas price swaps, options, swaptions and forward contracts. The Corporation’s commodity price risk management strategy establishes specific hedging targets, which may differ depending on current market conditions, to guide risk management activities. Additionally, the Corporation uses mark-to- market value, value-at-risk and net exposure to monitor natural gas price risk. These metrics are measured and reported daily to the Commodity Risk Management Committee, a subcommittee of the Corporation’s Executive Committee. Based on the Corporation’s period-end closing positions, an increase of $1.00 per Gigajoule in natural gas prices would have increased net income, through an increase in the fair value of natural gas derivative instruments, by $60 million (2014 – $87 million). Conversely, a decrease of $1.00 per Gigajoule would have decreased net income, through a decrease in the fair value of natural gas derivative instruments, by $61 million (2014 – $87 million). b. Interest rate risk The Corporation’s significant interest-bearing financial instruments are short-term variable rate debt and long-term fixed rate debt. Consequently, the Corporation is subject to interest rate risk on outstanding short-term debt balances as well as on future short-term and long-term borrowings. Interest rate risk is managed by adjusting the relative levels of short- and long-term debt depending on current market conditions. The Corporation monitors long-term debt levels by maintaining an industry-comparable long-term debt to long-term capital requirements ratio. The Corporation also prepares an annual corporate debt management plan which includes forecasts of borrowing requirements, financing strategies and target rates for interest rate risk management activities. As at March 31, 2016, the Corporation had $299 million of short-term debt outstanding, and $100 million of long-term debt that will mature within the next fiscal year and may be refinanced. Based on these amounts, a 1.0% change in interest rates would increase or decrease the annual finance expense by approximately $4 million (2014 – $3 million). The Corporation is also subject to interest rate risk related to debt retirement funds as the recorded fair value is driven by market prices which are largely determined by interest rates. Fluctuations in fair value of debt retirement funds can have an impact on the Corporation. The estimated impact of a 1.0% change in interest rates, assuming no change in the amount of debt retirement funds, would increase or decrease the market value of the debt retirement funds by approximately $9 million (2014 – $8 million).



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