UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
FORM 10-K
ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d)
OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the fiscal year ended December 26, 2020
Commission File Number: 000-00981
publixlogoa04a101.jpg
PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
(Exact name of Registrant as specified in its charter)
Florida   59-0324412
(State of incorporation)   (I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)
3300 Publix Corporate Parkway, Lakeland, Florida
  33811
(Address of principal executive offices)   (Zip Code)
(863) 688-1188
(Registrant’s telephone number, including area code)
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act: None
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act: Common Stock $1.00 Par Value
Indicate by check mark if the Registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act.      
Yes               No    X  
Indicate by check mark if the Registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act.      
Yes               No    X  
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes    X         No        
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T during the preceding 12 months. Yes    X         No        
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filer           Accelerated filer          Non-accelerated filer    X    
Smaller reporting company            Emerging growth company          
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the Registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act.        
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management’s assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report.        
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Act). Yes                No    X  
The aggregate market value of the common stock held by non-affiliates of the Registrant was approximately $19,947,149,000 as of June 26, 2020, the last business day of the Registrant’s most recently completed second fiscal quarter.
The number of shares of the Registrant’s common stock outstanding as of February 2, 2021 was 689,647,000.
Documents Incorporated By Reference
The information required by Part III of this report, to the extent not set forth herein, is incorporated by reference from the Proxy Statement solicited for the 2021 Annual Meeting of Stockholders to be held on April 13, 2021.

 


TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page
Item 1.
Item 1A.
Item 1B.
Item 2.
Item 3.
Item 4.
Item 5.
Item 6.
Item 7.
Item 7A.
Item 8.
Item 9.
Item 9A.
Item 9B.
Item 10.
Item 11.
Item 12.
Item 13.
Item 14.
Item 15.
Item 16.

 


PART I
 
Item 1. Business
Publix Super Markets, Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiaries (Company) are in the business of operating retail food supermarkets in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. The Company was founded in 1930 and later merged into another corporation that was originally incorporated in 1921. The Company has no other significant lines of business or industry segments.
Merchandising and manufacturing
The Company sells a variety of merchandise which includes grocery (including dairy, produce, floral, deli, bakery, meat and seafood), health and beauty care, general merchandise, pharmacy and other products and services. This merchandise includes nationally advertised and private label brands as well as unbranded products such as produce, meat and seafood. Private label items are produced in the Company’s dairy, bakery and deli manufacturing facilities or are manufactured for the Company by suppliers. The Company receives the food and nonfood products it sells from many sources. The Company believes its sources of supply for these products and the raw materials used in manufacturing are adequate for its needs and that it is not dependent upon a single supplier or relatively few suppliers. Merchandise is delivered to the supermarkets through Company distribution centers or directly from suppliers and is generally available in sufficient quantities to enable the Company to satisfy its customers. The cost of merchandise delivered to the supermarkets through the Company’s distribution centers is approximately 76% of the total product costs. The coronavirus pandemic has impacted the Company’s sources of supply, product mix and the availability of certain products. However, the Company has generally been able to secure alternative sources of supply to serve the needs of its customers. The future impact of the coronavirus pandemic on sources of supply, product mix and customer demand is uncertain and difficult to predict.
Store operations
The Company operated 1,264 supermarkets at the end of 2020, compared with 1,239 at the beginning of the year. In 2020, 39 supermarkets were opened (including nine replacement supermarkets) and 154 supermarkets were remodeled. Fourteen supermarkets were closed during the period. The replacement supermarkets that opened in 2020 replaced four supermarkets closed in 2020 and five supermarkets closed in a previous period. Five supermarkets closed in 2020 will be replaced on site in a subsequent period and five supermarkets will not be replaced. Net new supermarkets added 1.2 million square feet in 2020, an increase of 2.1%. At the end of 2020, the Company had 816 supermarkets located in Florida, 191 in Georgia, 79 in Alabama, 63 in South Carolina, 49 in North Carolina, 47 in Tennessee and 19 in Virginia. Also, at the end of 2020, the Company had 20 supermarkets under construction in Florida, four in Georgia, three in Tennessee, two in Alabama and two in South Carolina.
Competition
The Company is engaged in the highly competitive retail food industry. The Company’s competitors include traditional supermarkets, such as national and regional supermarket chains and independent supermarkets, as well as nontraditional competitors, such as supercenters, membership warehouse clubs, mass merchandisers, dollar stores, drug stores, specialty food stores, restaurants, convenience stores and online retailers. The Company’s ability to attract and retain customers is based primarily on quality of goods and service, price, convenience, product mix and store location. 
Working capital
The Company’s working capital at the end of 2020 consisted of $4,417.8 million in current assets and $4,366.8 million in current liabilities. Normal operating fluctuations in these balances can result in changes to cash flows from operating activities presented in the consolidated statements of cash flows that are not necessarily indicative of long-term operating trends. There are no unusual industry practices or requirements relating to working capital items.
Seasonality
The historical influx of winter residents to Florida and increased purchases of products during the traditional Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter holidays typically result in seasonal sales increases from November to April of each year. However, the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on travel, tourism and consumer spending may affect the Company’s seasonal sales.
Human Capital Resources
The Company is the largest employee-owned company in the U.S. with 227,000 employees at the end of 2020. The Company is dedicated to the dignity, value and employment security of its employees and recognizes they are its most important asset and primary competitive advantage. The Company considers its employee relations to be good.
Intellectual property
The Company’s trademarks, trade names, copyrights and similar intellectual property are important to the success of the Company’s business. Numerous trademarks, including “Publix” and “Where Shopping is a Pleasure,” have been registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Due to the importance of its intellectual property to its business, the Company actively defends and enforces its rights to such property.
1


Government regulation
The Company is subject to federal, state and local laws and regulations, including environmental laws and regulations that govern activities that may have adverse environmental effects and impose liabilities for the costs of contamination cleanup and damages arising from sites of past spills, disposals or other releases of hazardous materials. The Company may be held responsible for the remediation of environmental conditions regardless of whether the Company leases, subleases or owns the supermarkets or other facilities and regardless of whether such environmental conditions were created by the Company or a prior owner or tenant. In addition to environmental laws and regulations, the Company is subject to federal, state and local laws and regulations relating to, among other things, product labeling and safety, zoning, land use, workplace safety, public health, accessibility and restrictions on the sale of various products, including alcoholic beverages, tobacco and drugs. The Company is also subject to laws and regulations governing its relationship with employees, including minimum wage requirements, overtime, working conditions, disabled access and work permit requirements. Compliance with these laws and regulations had no material effect on capital expenditures, results of operations or the competitive position of the Company.
Company information
The Company’s Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Proxy Statements, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and any amendments to those reports may be obtained electronically, free of charge, through the Company’s website at corporate.publix.com/stock.
 
Item 1A. Risk Factors
In addition to the other information contained in this Annual Report on Form 10-K (Annual Report), the following risk factors should be considered carefully in evaluating the Company’s business. The Company’s financial condition and results of operations could be materially and adversely affected by any of these risks.
Industry and Economic Risks
Unfavorable impacts of the coronavirus pandemic or any future public health crisis on operations, customers, employees, suppliers and tenants could adversely affect the Company.
On March 13, 2020, the coronavirus pandemic was declared a national emergency. The coronavirus pandemic resulted in national, state and local authorities mandating or recommending isolation and other preventative measures for large portions of the population, including mandatory business restrictions and closures. These measures, which were necessary to slow the spread of the virus and protect lives, resulted in significant job losses and are expected to continue to have serious adverse impacts on domestic and foreign economies for an unknown length of time. The effects of economic stabilization efforts, including government payments to affected citizens and industries, remains uncertain.
The Company’s operations may be adversely impacted by the fear of exposure to or actual effects of the coronavirus. These impacts include:
operating cost increases due to changes in customer demand, changes in supermarket processes or increased government regulation;
delays in the timing of remodels and opening new supermarkets;
reduced workforce due to illness, quarantine or government mandates impacting the Company’s supermarket, distribution, manufacturing and support operations;
temporary supermarket closings or reduced hours of operation due to reduced workforce, enhanced cleaning processes, increased stocking or government mandates;
supply chain risks from goods produced in areas of significant coronavirus outbreak or disruption from suppliers due to financial or operational difficulties;
reduction in travel, tourism or consumer spending due to government recommendations or mandates, fear of exposure to the coronavirus or adverse economic conditions;
changes in customer demand from discretionary or higher priced products to lower priced products; or
uncertainty as to future operations of tenants in Company owned shopping centers due to adverse economic conditions.
The extent to which the coronavirus pandemic will continue to impact the Company will depend on future developments, which remain highly uncertain and difficult to predict, including the scope, severity and duration of the pandemic, the speed and effectiveness of the vaccine and treatment development and delivery, the direct and indirect economic effects of the pandemic and potential changes in consumer behavior, among others. The future impact of the coronavirus pandemic could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
Increased competition could adversely affect the Company.
The Company is engaged in the highly competitive retail food industry. The Company’s competitors include traditional supermarkets, such as national and regional supermarket chains and independent supermarkets, as well as nontraditional competitors, such as supercenters, membership warehouse clubs, mass merchandisers, dollar stores, drug stores, specialty food
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stores, restaurants, convenience stores and online retailers. There has been a trend for traditional supermarkets to lose market share to nontraditional competitors. The Company’s ability to attract and retain customers is based primarily on quality of goods and service, price, convenience, product mix and store location. The Company believes it will face increased competition in the future from existing and potentially new competitors. The impact of pricing, purchasing, advertising or promotional decisions made by its competitors as well as competitor format innovation and location additions could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
Adverse economic and other conditions that impact consumer spending could adversely affect the Company.
The Company’s results of operations are sensitive to changes in general economic conditions that impact consumer spending. Adverse economic conditions, including high unemployment, home foreclosures and weakness in the housing market, declines in the stock market and the instability of the credit markets, could cause a reduction in consumer spending. Other conditions that could reduce consumer spending include increases in tax, interest and inflation rates, increases in fuel and energy costs, increases in health care costs, the impact of natural disasters, public health crises or acts of terrorism, and other factors. Reductions in the level of consumer spending could cause changes in customer demand from discretionary or higher priced products to lower priced products or shift spending to lower priced competitors, which could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
Business and Operational Risks
Increased operating costs could adversely affect the Company.
The Company’s operations tend to be more labor intensive than some of its competitors primarily due to the additional customer service offered in its supermarkets. Consequently, uncertain labor markets, mandated increases in the minimum wage or other benefits, increased wage rates by retailers and other labor market competitors, an increased proportion of full-time employees, increased costs of health care due to health insurance reform or other factors could result in increased labor costs and disproportionately impact the Company in comparison to some of its competitors. The inability to improve or manage operating costs, including labor, facilities or other non-product related costs, could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
Failure to execute the Company’s core strategies could adversely affect the Company.
The Company’s core strategies focus on customer service, product quality, shopping environment, competitive pricing and convenient locations. The Company has implemented several strategic business and technology initiatives as part of the execution of these core strategies. The Company believes these core strategies and related strategic initiatives differentiate it from its competition and present opportunities for sustained market share and financial growth. Failure to execute these core strategies, or failure to execute the core strategies in a cost effective manner, could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
Failure to identify and obtain or retain suitable supermarket sites could adversely affect the Company.
The Company’s ability to obtain sites for new supermarkets is dependent on identifying and entering into lease or purchase agreements on commercially reasonable terms for properties that are suitable for its needs. If the Company fails to identify suitable sites and enter into lease or purchase agreements on a timely basis for any reason, including competition from other companies seeking similar sites, the Company’s growth could be adversely affected because it may be unable to open new supermarkets as anticipated. Similarly, the Company could be adversely affected if it is unable to retain sites for its existing leased supermarkets on commercially reasonable terms.
Information Security and Technology Risks
Failure to maintain the privacy and security of confidential customer and business information and the resulting unfavorable publicity could adversely affect the Company.
The Company receives, retains and transmits confidential information about its customers, employees and suppliers and entrusts certain of that information to third party service providers. The Company depends upon the secure transmission of confidential information, including customer payments, over external networks. Additionally, the use of individually identifiable data by the Company and its third party service providers is subject to federal, state and local laws and regulations. Although the Company has continuously invested in its information technology systems and implemented policies and procedures to protect its confidential information, there is no assurance that the Company will successfully defend against an intrusion into or compromise of the Company’s information technology systems or those of its third party service providers. An intrusion into or compromise of the Company’s information technology systems, or those of its third party service providers, that results in customer, employee or supplier information being obtained by unauthorized persons could adversely affect the Company’s reputation with existing and potential customers, employees and others. Such an intrusion or compromise could require expending significant resources related to remediation, lead to legal proceedings and regulatory actions, result in a disruption of operations and adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
3


Disruptions in information technology systems could adversely affect the Company.
The Company is dependent on complex information technology systems to operate its business, enhance customer service, improve the efficiency of its supply chain and increase employee efficiency. Certain of these information technology systems are hosted by third party service providers. The Company’s information technology systems, as well as those of the Company’s third party service providers, are subject to damage or interruption from power outages, computer and telecommunication failures, computer viruses, malicious service disruptions, catastrophic events and user errors. Significant disruptions in the information technology systems of the Company or its third party service providers could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
Self-insured Claims and Product Liability Risks
Changes in the factors affecting self-insured claims could adversely affect the Company.
Claims related to health care, employee benefits, workers’ compensation, general liability, property, plant and equipment, fleet liability and directors and officers liability are generally self-insured. The Company uses third party insurance in certain instances to partially mitigate the risk related to these potential losses. While the Company estimates its exposure for these claims and establishes reserves for the estimated liabilities, the actual liabilities could be in excess of these reserves. In addition, the frequency or severity of claims, litigation trends, benefit level changes, or catastrophic events involving property, plant and equipment losses could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
Product liability claims, product recalls and the resulting unfavorable publicity could adversely affect the Company.
The distribution and sale of grocery, drug and other products purchased from suppliers or manufactured by the Company entails an inherent risk of product liability claims, product recalls and the resulting adverse publicity. Such products may contain contaminants and may be inadvertently sold by the Company. These contaminants may, in certain cases, result in illness, injury or death if processing at the consumer level, if applicable, does not eliminate the contaminants. Sale of contaminated products, even if inadvertent, may be a violation of law and may lead to a product recall and/or an increased risk of exposure to product liability claims asserted against the Company. If a product liability claim is successful and the Company does not have contractual indemnification available, the claim could have an adverse effect on the Company’s financial condition and results of operations. In addition, even if a product liability claim is not successful or is not fully pursued, the adverse publicity surrounding any assertion that the Company’s products caused illness or injury could have an adverse effect on the Company’s reputation with existing and potential customers and on the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
Legal and Regulatory Risks
Unfavorable changes in, failure to comply with or increased costs of complying with environmental laws and regulations could adversely affect the Company.
The Company is subject to federal, state and local laws and regulations that govern activities that may have adverse environmental effects and impose liabilities for the costs of contamination cleanup and damages arising from sites of past spills, disposals or other releases of hazardous materials. Under current environmental laws and regulations, the Company may be held responsible for the remediation of environmental conditions regardless of whether the Company leases, subleases or owns the supermarkets or other facilities and regardless of whether such environmental conditions were created by the Company or a prior owner or tenant. Environmental conditions relating to prior, existing or future sites may result in substantial remediation costs, business interruption or adverse publicity which could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations. In addition, the increased focus on climate change, waste management and other environmental issues may result in new environmental laws or regulations that could result in increased compliance costs to the Company, directly or indirectly through its suppliers, which could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
Unfavorable changes in, failure to comply with or increased costs of complying with laws and regulations could adversely affect the Company.
In addition to environmental laws and regulations, the Company is subject to federal, state and local laws and regulations relating to, among other things, product labeling and safety, zoning, land use, workplace safety, public health, accessibility and restrictions on the sale of various products, including alcoholic beverages, tobacco and drugs. The Company is also subject to laws and regulations governing its relationship with employees, including minimum wage requirements, overtime, working conditions, disabled access and work permit requirements. Increased costs of complying with existing, new or changes in laws and regulations could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
4


Unfavorable results of legal proceedings could adversely affect the Company.
The Company is subject from time to time to various lawsuits, claims and charges arising in the normal course of business, including employment, personal injury, commercial and other matters. Some lawsuits also contain class action allegations. The Company estimates its exposure to these legal proceedings and establishes reserves for the estimated liabilities. Assessing and predicting the outcome of these matters involves substantial uncertainties. Differences in actual outcomes, or changes in the Company’s assessment and predictions of the outcomes, could adversely affect the Company’s financial condition and results of operations.
 
Item 1B. Unresolved Staff Comments
None
 
Item 2. Properties
At year end, the Company operated 59.6 million square feet of supermarket space. The Company’s supermarkets vary in size. Current supermarket prototypes range from 31,000 to 55,000 square feet. Supermarkets are often located in shopping centers where the Company is the anchor tenant. The majority of the Company’s supermarkets are leased. Initial lease terms are typically 20 years followed by five year renewal options. Both the building and land are owned at 361 locations. The building is owned while the land is leased at 79 other locations.
The Company supplies its supermarkets from nine primary distribution centers located in Lakeland, Miami, Jacksonville, Sarasota, Orlando, Deerfield Beach and Boynton Beach, Florida, Lawrenceville, Georgia and McCalla, Alabama. A new distribution center is currently under construction in Greensboro, North Carolina. The Company operates six manufacturing facilities, including three dairy plants located in Lakeland and Deerfield Beach, Florida and Lawrenceville, Georgia, two bakery plants located in Lakeland, Florida and Atlanta, Georgia and a deli plant located in Lakeland, Florida.
The Company’s corporate offices, primary distribution centers and manufacturing facilities are owned with no outstanding debt. The Company’s properties are well maintained, in good operating condition and suitable for operating its business.
 
Item 3. Legal Proceedings
The Company is subject from time to time to various lawsuits, claims and charges arising in the normal course of business. The Company believes its recorded reserves are adequate in light of the probable and estimable liabilities. The estimated amount of reasonably possible losses for lawsuits, claims and charges, individually and in the aggregate, is considered to be immaterial. In the opinion of management, the ultimate resolution of these legal proceedings will not have a material adverse effect on the Company’s financial condition, results of operations or cash flows.
 
Item 4. Mine Safety Disclosures
Not applicable
 
PART II
 
Item 5. Market for the Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
(a)Market Information
The Company’s common stock is not traded on an established securities market. Substantially all transactions of the Company’s common stock have been among the Company, its employees, former employees, their families and the retirement plans established for the Company’s employees. Common stock is made available for sale by the Company only to its current employees and members of its Board of Directors through the Employee Stock Purchase Plan (ESPP) and Non-Employee Directors Stock Purchase Plan (Directors Plan) and to participants of the 401(k) Plan. In addition, common stock is provided to employees through the Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP). The Company currently repurchases common stock subject to certain terms and conditions. The ESPP, Directors Plan, 401(k) Plan and ESOP each contain provisions prohibiting any transfer for value without the owner first offering the common stock to the Company. The Company serves as the registrar and stock transfer agent for its common stock.
Because there is no trading of the Company’s common stock on an established securities market, the market price of the Company’s common stock is determined by its Board of Directors. As part of the process to determine the market price, an independent valuation is obtained. The process includes comparing the Company’s financial results to those of comparable companies that are publicly traded (comparable publicly traded companies). The purpose of the process is to determine a value for the Company’s common stock that is comparable to the stock value of comparable publicly traded companies by considering both the results of the stock market and the relative financial results of comparable publicly traded companies.
5


The market prices for the Company’s common stock for 2020 and 2019 were as follows:
2020 2019
January - February $ 47.10  42.70 
March - April 48.90  42.85 
May - July 50.10  44.75 
August - October 54.35  44.10 
November - December 57.95  47.10 
(b)Approximate Number of Equity Security Holders
As of February 2, 2021, the approximate number of holders of record of the Company’s common stock was 205,000.
(c)Dividends
The Company paid quarterly dividends per share on its common stock in 2020 and 2019 as follows:
Quarter 2020 2019
First $ 0.30  0.26 
Second 0.32  0.30 
Third 0.32  0.30 
Fourth 0.32  0.30 
$ 1.26  1.16 
Payment of dividends is within the discretion of the Board of Directors and depends on, among other factors, net earnings, capital requirements and the financial condition of the Company. However, the Company intends to continue to pay comparable dividends to stockholders in the future.
(d)Purchases of Equity Securities by the Issuer
Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
Shares of common stock repurchased by the Company during the three months ended December 26, 2020 were as follows (amounts are in thousands, except per share amounts):
Period
Total
Number of
Shares
Purchased
Average
Price Paid
per Share
Total
Number of
Shares
Purchased as
Part of Publicly
Announced Plans or Programs (1)
Approximate
Dollar Value
of Shares
That May Yet Be
Purchased Under the Plans or Programs (1)
September 27 - October 31, 2020 903  $ 54.35  N/A N/A
November 1 - November 28, 2020 3,736     57.95  N/A N/A
November 29 - December 26, 2020 1,443     57.95  N/A N/A
 
Total
6,082  $ 57.42  N/A N/A



____________________________
(1)Common stock is made available for sale by the Company only to its current employees and members of its Board of Directors through the ESPP and Directors Plan and to participants of the 401(k) Plan. In addition, common stock is provided to employees through the ESOP. The Company currently repurchases common stock subject to certain terms and conditions. The ESPP, Directors Plan, 401(k) Plan and ESOP each contain provisions prohibiting any transfer for value without the owner first offering the common stock to the Company.
The Company’s common stock is not traded on an established securities market. The amount of common stock offered to the Company for repurchase is not within the control of the Company, but is at the discretion of the stockholders. The Company does not believe that these repurchases of its common stock are within the scope of a publicly announced plan or program (although the terms of the plans discussed above have been communicated to the participants). Thus, the Company does not believe that it has made any repurchases during the three months ended December 26, 2020 required to be disclosed in the last two columns of the table.
6


(e)Performance Graph
The following performance graph sets forth the Company’s cumulative total stockholder return during the five years ended December 26, 2020, compared to the cumulative total return on the S&P 500 Index and a custom Peer Group Index including retail food supermarket companies.(1) The Peer Group Index is weighted based on the various companies’ market capitalization. The comparison assumes $100 was invested at the end of 2015 in the Company’s common stock and in each of the related indices and assumes reinvestment of dividends.
The Company’s common stock is valued as of the end of each fiscal quarter. After the end of a quarter, however, shares continue to be traded at the prior valuation until the new valuation is received. The cumulative total return for the companies represented in the S&P 500 Index and the custom Peer Group Index is based on those companies’ trading price as of the Company’s fiscal year end. The following performance graph is based on the Company’s trading price at fiscal year end based on its market price as of the prior fiscal quarter. For comparative purposes, a performance graph based on the Company’s fiscal year end valuation (market price as of March 1, 2021) is provided in the 2021 Proxy Statement. Past stock performance shown below is no guarantee of future performance.
Comparison of Five Year Cumulative Return Based Upon Fiscal Year End Trading Price
chart-f182cbb99b2845919631.jpg
2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
symbol1a01a121.jpg
Publix $100.00  98.04  92.15  109.41  123.82  156.02 
symbol2a01a121.jpg
S&P 500 100.00  111.07  135.32  128.28  170.57  198.54 
symbol3a01a121.jpg
Peer Group (1)
100.00  92.99  85.62  95.06  101.63  111.48 


___________________________
(1)Companies included in the Peer Group are Ahold Delhaize, Kroger and Weis Markets.
7
 


Item 6. Selected Financial Data
2020 2019 2018 2017
2016 (1)
(Amounts are in thousands, except per share amounts, ratios and number of supermarkets)
Sales:
Sales $ 44,863,507 38,116,402  36,093,907  34,558,286  33,999,921 
Percent change 17.7  % 5.6  % 4.4  % 1.6  % 5.1  %
Comparable store sales percent change 16.0  % 3.6  % 2.1  % 1.7  % 1.9  %
Earnings:
Gross profit (2)
$ 12,508,901 10,375,933  9,782,516  9,428,569  9,265,616 
Earnings before income tax expense $ 5,036,655 3,785,986  2,920,968  3,027,506  2,940,376 
Net earnings $ 3,971,838 3,005,395  2,381,167 
2,291,894 (3)
2,025,688 
Net earnings as a percent of sales 8.9  % 7.9  % 6.6  %
          6.6% (3)
6.0  %
Common stock:
Weighted average shares outstanding 700,587 713,535  726,407  753,483  769,267 
Earnings per share $ 5.67 4.21  3.28 
3.04 (3)
2.63 
Dividends per share $ 1.26 1.16  1.01  0.9125  0.8675 
Financial data:
Capital expenditures $ 1,228,387 1,141,118  1,350,089  1,429,059  1,443,827 
Working capital $ 50,952
226,886 (4)
804,641  942,607  1,574,464 
Current ratio 1.01
1.06 (4)
1.27  1.30  1.53 
Total assets $ 28,094,077
24,507,120 (4)
18,982,516  18,183,506  17,386,458 
Long-term obligations (including current portion)
$ 3,365,955
3,244,572 (4)
167,665  193,074  250,584 
Common stock related to ESOP $ 3,484,549 3,259,230  3,134,999  3,053,138  3,068,097 
Total equity $ 19,285,864 16,901,344  14,994,664  14,108,619  13,497,437 
Supermarkets 1,264 1,239  1,211  1,167  1,136 
Non-GAAP Financial Measures: (5)
Net earnings excluding impact of fair value adjustment
$ 3,689,204 2,615,572  2,517,493  N/A N/A
Net earnings as a percent of sales excluding impact of fair value adjustment
8.2  % 6.9  % 7.0  % N/A N/A
Earnings per share excluding impact of fair value adjustment
$ 5.27 3.67  3.47  N/A N/A





___________________________
(1)Fiscal year 2016 includes 53 weeks. All other years include 52 weeks.
(2)Gross profit represents sales less cost of merchandise sold as reported in the consolidated statements of earnings.
(3)During 2017, the Company recorded the remeasurement of deferred income taxes due to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (Tax Act). Excluding the impact of the Tax Act, net earnings would have been $2,067,699,000 or $2.74 per share and 6.0% as a percent of sales.
(4)In 2019, the Company adopted the Accounting Standards Update requiring the lease rights and obligations arising from existing and new lease agreements be recognized as assets and liabilities on the balance sheet.
(5)In addition to reporting financial results in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), the Company presents net earnings and earnings per share excluding the impact of equity securities being measured at fair value with net unrealized gains and losses from changes in the fair value recognized in earnings (fair value adjustment). For a more detailed description of these measures, refer to Non-GAAP Financial Measures in Item 7, Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.

8
 


Item 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations
Overview
The Company is engaged in the retail food industry, operating supermarkets in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. The Company has no other significant lines of business or industry segments. As of December 26, 2020, the Company operated 1,264 supermarkets including 816 located in Florida, 191 in Georgia, 79 in Alabama, 63 in South Carolina, 49 in North Carolina, 47 in Tennessee and 19 in Virginia. In 2020, 39 supermarkets were opened (including nine replacement supermarkets) and 154 supermarkets were remodeled. During 2020, the Company opened 21 supermarkets in Florida, five in Georgia, four in North Carolina, four in Virginia, three in Alabama, one in South Carolina and one in Tennessee. Fourteen supermarkets were closed during the period. The replacement supermarkets that opened in 2020 replaced four supermarkets closed in 2020 and five supermarkets closed in a previous period. Five supermarkets closed in 2020 will be replaced on site in a subsequent period and five supermarkets will not be replaced. In the normal course of operations, the Company replaces supermarkets and closes supermarkets that are not meeting performance expectations. The impact of future supermarket closings is not expected to be material.
The Company sells a variety of merchandise to generate revenues. This merchandise includes grocery (including dairy, produce, floral, deli, bakery, meat and seafood), health and beauty care, general merchandise, pharmacy and other products and services. Merchandise includes nationally advertised and private label brands as well as unbranded products such as produce, meat and seafood. The Company’s private label brands play an important role in its merchandising strategy.
Profit is earned by selling merchandise at price levels that produce sales in excess of the cost of merchandise sold and operating and administrative expenses. The Company has generally been able to increase revenues and net earnings from year to year. Further, the Company has been able to meet its cash requirements from internally generated funds without the need for debt financing. The Company’s year end cash balances are impacted by its operating results as well as by capital expenditures, investment transactions, common stock repurchases and dividend payments.
Operating Environment
The Company is engaged in the highly competitive retail food industry. The Company’s competitors include traditional supermarkets, such as national and regional supermarket chains and independent supermarkets, as well as nontraditional competitors, such as supercenters, membership warehouse clubs, mass merchandisers, dollar stores, drug stores, specialty food stores, restaurants, convenience stores and online retailers. There has been a trend for traditional supermarkets to lose market share to nontraditional competitors. The Company’s ability to attract and retain customers is based primarily on quality of goods and service, price, convenience, product mix and store location. In addition, the Company competes with other companies for new retail sites. To meet the challenges of this highly competitive environment, the Company continues to focus on its core strategies, including customer service, product quality, shopping environment, competitive pricing and convenient locations. The Company has implemented several strategic business and technology initiatives as part of the execution of these core strategies. The Company believes these core strategies and related strategic initiatives differentiate it from its competition and present opportunities for sustained market share and financial growth.
Coronavirus Pandemic Impact
On March 13, 2020, the coronavirus pandemic was declared a national emergency. The coronavirus pandemic resulted in national, state and local authorities mandating or recommending isolation and other preventative measures for large portions of the population, including mandatory business restrictions and closures. These measures, which were necessary to slow the spread of the virus and protect lives, resulted in significant job losses and are expected to continue to have serious adverse impacts on domestic and foreign economies for an unknown length of time. The effects of economic stabilization efforts, including government payments to affected citizens and industries, remain uncertain.
The Company has been classified as an essential business in all locations in which it operates and has remained open to serve the needs of its customers. It remains a top priority of the Company to serve its customers in a way that protects the health and safety of its employees and customers. The Company estimates that its sales for 2020 increased approximately $4.6 billion due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The Company incurred additional payroll related, transportation and other costs to meet the significant sales demand and protect the health and safety of its employees and customers. The profit on the incremental sales resulting from increased customer purchases of food and cleaning supplies more than offset the additional costs incurred. The future impact of the coronavirus pandemic is uncertain and difficult to predict.

9


Results of Operations
The Company’s fiscal year ends on the last Saturday in December. Fiscal years 2020, 2019 and 2018 include 52 weeks.
Sales
Sales for 2020 were $44.9 billion as compared with $38.1 billion in 2019, an increase of $6,747.1 million or 17.7%. The increase in sales for 2020 as compared with 2019 was primarily due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The Company estimates that its sales for 2020 increased approximately $4.6 billion or 12.1% due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Comparable store sales (supermarkets open for the same weeks in both periods, including replacement supermarkets) for 2020 increased 16.0% primarily due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Sales for supermarkets that are replaced on site are classified as new supermarket sales since the replacement period for the supermarket is generally 9 to 12 months.
Sales for 2019 were $38.1 billion as compared with $36.1 billion in 2018, an increase of $2,022.5 million or 5.6%. The increase in sales for 2019 as compared with 2018 was primarily due to new supermarket sales and a 3.6% increase in comparable store sales. Comparable store sales for 2019 increased primarily due to increased product costs.
Gross profit
Gross profit (sales less cost of merchandise sold) as a percentage of sales was 27.9%, 27.2% and 27.1% in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. Excluding the last-in, first-out (LIFO) reserve effect of $19.8 million, $39.9 million and $24.2 million in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively, gross profit as a percentage of sales would have been 27.9%, 27.3% and 27.2% in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. After excluding the LIFO reserve effect, the increase in gross profit as a percentage of sales for 2020 as compared with 2019 was primarily due to reduced shrink and volume driven efficiencies related to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. After excluding the LIFO reserve effect, gross profit as a percentage of sales for 2019 as compared with 2018 remained relatively unchanged.
Operating and administrative expenses
Operating and administrative expenses as a percentage of sales were 19.7%, 20.6% and 20.3% in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. The decrease in operating and administrative expenses as a percentage of sales for 2020 as compared with 2019 was primarily due to volume driven efficiencies related to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The increase in operating and administrative expenses as a percentage of sales for 2019 as compared with 2018 was primarily due to an increase in payroll costs as a percentage of sales.
Operating profit
Operating profit as a percentage of sales was 8.9% in 2020 and 7.6% in 2019 and 2018. The increase in operating profit as a percentage of sales for 2020 as compared with 2019 was primarily due to the increase in gross profit as a percentage of sales and the decrease in operating and administrative expenses as a percentage of sales.
Investment income
Investment income was $975.0 million, $814.4 million and $56.7 million in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. Excluding the impact of net unrealized gains on equity securities in 2020 and 2019 and net unrealized losses on equity securities in 2018, investment income would have been $596.0 million, $291.7 million and $239.5 million for 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. Excluding the impact of net unrealized gains on equity securities, the increase in investment income for 2020 as compared with 2019 was primarily due to an increase in net realized gains on investments. Excluding the impact of net unrealized gains on equity securities in 2019 and net unrealized losses on equity securities in 2018, the increase in investment income for 2019 as compared with 2018 was primarily due to an increase in interest and dividend income.
Income tax expense
The effective income tax rate was 21.1%, 20.6% and 18.5% in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. The increase in the effective income tax rate for 2020 as compared with 2019 was primarily due to the decreased impact of permanent deductions and credits due to the increase in earnings before income tax expense. The increase in the effective income tax rate for 2019 as compared with 2018 was primarily due to the impact of net unrealized gains on equity securities in 2019 compared with net unrealized losses on equity securities in 2018 and a decrease in investment related tax credits.

10


Net earnings
Net earnings were $3,971.8 million or $5.67 per share, $3,005.4 million or $4.21 per share and $2,381.2 million or $3.28 per share in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. Net earnings as a percentage of sales were 8.9%, 7.9% and 6.6% in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. Excluding the impact of net unrealized gains on equity securities in 2020 and 2019 and net unrealized losses on equity securities in 2018, net earnings would have been $3,689.2 million or $5.27 per share and 8.2% as a percentage of sales for 2020, $2,615.6 million or $3.67 per share and 6.9% as a percentage of sales for 2019 and $2,517.5 million or $3.47 per share and 7.0% as a percentage of sales for 2018. Excluding the impact of net unrealized gains on equity securities, the increase in net earnings as a percentage of sales for 2020 as compared with 2019 was primarily due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Excluding the impact of net unrealized gains on equity securities in 2019 and net unrealized losses on equity securities in 2018, net earnings as a percentage of sales for 2019 as compared with 2018 remained relatively unchanged.
Non-GAAP Financial Measures
In addition to reporting financial results for 2020, 2019 and 2018 in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), the Company presents net earnings and earnings per share excluding the impact of equity securities being measured at fair value with net unrealized gains and losses from changes in the fair value recognized in earnings (fair value adjustment). These measures are not in accordance with, or an alternative to, GAAP. The Company excludes the impact of the fair value adjustment since it is primarily due to temporary equity market fluctuations that do not reflect the Company’s operations. The Company believes this information is useful in providing period-to-period comparisons of the results of operations. Following is a reconciliation of net earnings to net earnings excluding the impact of the fair value adjustment for 2020, 2019 and 2018:
2020 2019 2018
(Amounts are in millions, except per share amounts)
Net earnings
$ 3,971.8  3,005.4  2,381.2 
Fair value adjustment, due to net unrealized (gain) loss, on equity securities held at end of year (554.6) (472.5) 107.5 
Net gain (loss) on sale of equity securities previously recognized through fair value adjustment 175.6  (50.2) 75.3 
Income tax expense (benefit) (1)
96.4  132.9  (46.5)
Net earnings excluding impact of fair value adjustment
$ 3,689.2  2,615.6  2,517.5 
Weighted average shares outstanding
700.6  713.5  726.4 
Earnings per share excluding impact of fair value adjustment
$ 5.27  3.67  3.47 
(1)Income tax expense (benefit) is based on the Company’s combined federal and state statutory income tax rates.

11


Liquidity and Capital Resources
Cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments and long-term investments totaled $11,961.7 million as of December 26, 2020, as compared with $9,189.8 million as of December 28, 2019. The increase was primarily due to increased sales as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Net cash provided by operating activities
Net cash provided by operating activities was $5,424.2 million, $4,024.4 million and $3,631.9 million in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. The increase in net cash provided by operating activities for 2020 as compared with 2019 was primarily due to increased sales as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the timing of payments for merchandise and the deferral of 2020 payroll tax payments under a coronavirus tax relief provision, partially offset by the increase in income taxes paid. The increase in net cash provided by operating activities for 2019 as compared with 2018 was primarily due to 2017 federal income tax payments extended to 2018 due to Hurricane Irma in 2017.
Net cash used in investing activities
Net cash used in investing activities was $3,428.5 million, $2,257.0 million and $1,742.8 million in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. The primary use of net cash in investing activities for 2020 was funding capital expenditures and net increases in investments. Capital expenditures for 2020 totaled $1,228.4 million. These expenditures were incurred in connection with the opening of 39 supermarkets (including nine replacement supermarkets) and the remodeling of 154 supermarkets. Expenditures were also incurred for new supermarkets and remodels in progress and new or enhanced information technology hardware and software. In 2020, the payment for investments, net of the proceeds from the sale and maturity of investments, was $2,210.4 million. The primary use of net cash in investing activities for 2019 was funding capital expenditures and net increases in investments. Capital expenditures for 2019 totaled $1,141.1 million. These expenditures were incurred in connection with the opening of 35 supermarkets (including five replacement supermarkets) and the remodeling of 177 supermarkets. Expenditures were also incurred for new supermarkets and remodels in progress, new or enhanced information technology hardware and software and the acquisition of shopping centers with the Company as the anchor tenant. In 2019, the payment for investments, net of the proceeds from the sale and maturity of investments, was $1,124.5 million.
Net cash used in financing activities
Net cash used in financing activities was $2,085.7 million, $1,603.3 million and $1,869.8 million in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. The primary use of net cash in financing activities was funding net common stock repurchases and dividend payments. Net common stock repurchases totaled $1,190.5 million, $776.6 million and $1,097.9 million in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. The Company currently repurchases common stock at the stockholders’ request in accordance with the terms of the ESPP, Directors Plan, 401(k) Plan and ESOP. The amount of common stock offered to the Company for repurchase is not within the control of the Company, but is at the discretion of the stockholders. The Company expects to continue to repurchase its common stock, as offered by its stockholders from time to time, at its then current value. However, with the exception of certain shares distributed from the ESOP, such purchases are not required and the Company retains the right to discontinue them at any time.
Dividends
The Company paid quarterly dividends on its common stock totaling $884.4 million or $1.26 per share, $828.7 million or $1.16 per share and $734.5 million or $1.01 per share in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively.
Capital expenditures projection
Capital expenditures for 2021 are expected to be approximately $1,600 million, primarily related to new supermarkets, remodeling existing supermarkets, construction or expansion of warehouses, new or enhanced information technology hardware and software and the acquisition or development of shopping centers in which the Company operates. The shopping center acquisitions are financed with internally generated funds and assumed debt, if prepayment penalties for the debt are determined to be significant. This capital program is subject to continuing change and review.
Cash requirements
In 2021, cash requirements for operations, capital expenditures, common stock repurchases and dividend payments are expected to be financed by internally generated funds or liquid assets. Based on the Company’s financial position, it is expected that short-term and long-term borrowings would be available to support the Company’s liquidity requirements, if needed.
12


Contractual Obligations
Following is a summary of contractual obligations as of December 26, 2020:
Payments Due by Period
Total 2021
 2022-
2023
 2024-
2025
There-
after
(Amounts are in thousands)
Contractual obligations:
Operating leases (1)
$ 3,624,709  438,358  787,096  602,146  1,797,109 
Finance leases (1)
351,967  32,962  51,042  34,388  233,575 
Purchase obligations (2)(3)(4)
2,879,969  1,467,545  432,991  220,457  758,976 
Other long-term liabilities:
Self-insurance reserves (5)
397,081  161,223  113,649  45,502  76,707 
Accrued postretirement benefit cost
137,786  6,430  13,374  13,970  104,012 
Long-term debt (6)
160,227  36,392  63,932  32,565  27,338 
Other
43,454  27,291  757  652  14,754 
Total
$ 7,595,193  2,170,201  1,462,841  949,680  3,012,471 
Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements
The Company is not a party to any off-balance sheet arrangements that have, or are reasonably likely to have, a current or future effect on the Company’s financial condition, results of operations or cash flows.














____________________________
(1)For a more detailed description of the operating and finance lease obligations, refer to Note 4 Leases in the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements.
(2)Purchase obligations include agreements to purchase goods or services that are enforceable and legally binding on the Company and that specify all significant terms, including fixed or minimum quantities to be purchased, fixed, minimum or variable price provisions and the approximate timing of the transaction. Purchase obligations exclude agreements that are cancelable within 30 days without penalty.
(3)As of December 26, 2020, the Company had outstanding $9.1 million in trade letters of credit and $3.7 million in standby letters of credit to support certain of these purchase obligations.
(4)Purchase obligations include $1,019.4 million in real estate taxes, insurance and maintenance commitments related to operating and finance leases. The actual amounts to be paid may be variable and have been estimated based on current costs. Purchase obligations also include $359.5 million in lease agreements that have not yet commenced.
(5)As of December 26, 2020, the Company maintained restricted investments in the amount of $182.1 million primarily for the benefit of the Company’s insurance carrier related to self-insurance reserves.
(6)For a more detailed description of the long-term debt obligations, refer to Note 5 Consolidation of Joint Ventures and Long-Term Debt in the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements.
13


Critical Accounting Estimates
The Company’s discussion and analysis of its financial condition and results of operations are based upon the Company’s consolidated financial statements, which have been prepared in accordance with GAAP. The preparation of these consolidated financial statements requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities and disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities as of the date of the consolidated financial statements and the reported amounts of revenues and expenses during the reporting period. Actual results could differ from those estimates. The Company’s significant accounting policies are described in Note 1 in the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements. The Company believes the following involves significant estimates and judgments in the preparation of its consolidated financial statements.
Self-Insurance Reserves
Self-insurance reserves are established for health care, workers’ compensation, general liability and fleet liability claims. These reserves are determined based on actual claims experience and an estimate of claims incurred but not reported including, where necessary, actuarial studies. The Company believes that the use of actuarial studies to determine self-insurance reserves represents a consistent method of measuring these subjective estimates. Actuarial projections of losses for general liability and workers’ compensation claims are discounted and subject to variability. The causes of variability include, but are not limited to, such factors as future interest and inflation rates, future economic conditions, claims experience, litigation trends and benefit level changes. Historically, there have not been significant changes in the factors and assumptions used in the valuation of the self-insurance reserves. However, significant changes in such factors and assumptions could materially impact the valuation of the self-insurance reserves.
Forward-Looking Statements
Certain information provided by the Company in this Annual Report may be forward-looking information as defined in Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (Exchange Act). Forward-looking information includes statements about the future performance of the Company and is based on management’s assumptions and beliefs in light of the information currently available to them, including as it relates to the coronavirus pandemic. When used, the words “plan,” “estimate,” “project,” “intend,” “expect,” “believe,” “will” and other similar expressions, as they relate to the Company, are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are subject to uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those statements including, but not limited to, the following: competitive practices and pricing in the food and drug industries generally and particularly in the Company’s principal markets; results of programs to increase sales, including private label sales; results of programs to control or reduce costs; changes in buying, pricing and promotional practices; changes in shrink management; changes in the general economy, including the economic downturn associated with the coronavirus pandemic; changes in consumer spending; changes in population, employment and job growth in the Company’s principal markets; impacts of a public health crisis or other significant catastrophic event, such as the coronavirus pandemic; impacts of an intrusion into, compromise of or disruption in the Company’s information technology systems; and other factors affecting the Company’s business within or beyond the Company’s control. These factors include changes in the rate of inflation, changes in federal, state and local laws and regulations, adverse determinations with respect to litigation or other claims, ability to recruit and retain employees, increases in operating costs including, but not limited to, labor costs, credit card fees and utility costs, particularly electric rates, ability to construct new supermarkets or complete remodels as rapidly as planned and stability of product costs. Other factors and assumptions not identified above could also cause the actual results to differ materially from those set forth in the forward-looking statements. Except as may be required by applicable law, the Company assumes no obligation to publicly update these forward-looking statements.
14
 


Item 7A.  Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk
The Company does not utilize financial instruments for trading or other speculative purposes, nor does it utilize leveraged financial instruments.
Cash equivalents and short-term investments are subject to interest rate risk and credit risk. Most of the cash equivalents and short-term investments are held in money market investments and debt securities that mature in less than one year. Due to the quality of the short-term investments held, the Company does not expect the valuation of these investments to be significantly impacted by future market conditions.
Debt securities are subject to interest rate risk and credit risk. Debt securities held by the Company at year end primarily consisted of corporate, state and municipal bonds with high credit ratings; therefore, the Company believes the credit risk is low. The Company believes a 50 basis point increase in interest rates would result in an immaterial unrealized loss on its debt securities. Since the Company does not intend to sell its debt securities or will likely not be required to sell its debt securities prior to any anticipated recovery, such a hypothetical temporary unrealized loss would impact comprehensive earnings, but not earnings or cash flows.
Equity securities are subject to equity price risk that results from fluctuations in quoted market prices as of the balance sheet date. Market price fluctuations may result from perceived changes in the underlying economic characteristics of the issuer, the relative price of alternative investments and general market conditions. Due to equity securities being measured at fair value with net unrealized gains and losses from changes in the fair value recognized in earnings, fluctuations in quoted market prices for equity securities will impact earnings. A decrease of 10% in the value of the Company’s equity securities would result in an unrealized loss of approximately $210 million recognized in earnings, but would not impact cash flows.

 
Item 8.  Financial Statements and Supplementary Data
Index to Consolidated Financial Statements and Schedule
Page
Consolidated Financial Statements:

The following consolidated financial statement schedule of the Company for the years ended
December 26, 2020, December 28, 2019 and December 29, 2018 is submitted herewith:
All other schedules are omitted as the required information is inapplicable or the information is
presented in the consolidated financial statements or related notes.




15
 


Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm
To the Stockholders and Board of Directors
Publix Super Markets, Inc.:
Opinion on the Consolidated Financial Statements
We have audited the accompanying consolidated balance sheets of Publix Super Markets, Inc. and subsidiaries (the Company) as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019, the related consolidated statements of earnings, comprehensive earnings, cash flows and stockholders’ equity for each of the years in the three-year period ended December 26, 2020, and the related notes and the financial statement schedule listed in the accompanying index (collectively, the consolidated financial statements). In our opinion, the consolidated financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the Company as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019, and the results of its operations and its cash flows for each of the years in the three-year period ended December 26, 2020, in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles.
Change in Accounting Principle
As discussed in Note 4(a) to the consolidated financial statements, the Company has changed its method of accounting for leases as of December 30, 2018 due to the adoption of Accounting Standards Codification Topic 842, Leases.
Basis for Opinion
These consolidated financial statements are the responsibility of the Company’s management. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on these consolidated financial statements based on our audits. We are a public accounting firm registered with the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (PCAOB) and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.
We conducted our audits in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the consolidated financial statements are free of material misstatement, whether due to error or fraud. The Company is not required to have, nor were we engaged to perform, an audit of its internal control over financial reporting. As part of our audits, we are required to obtain an understanding of internal control over financial reporting but not for the purpose of expressing an opinion on the effectiveness of the Company’s internal control over financial reporting. Accordingly, we express no such opinion.
Our audits included performing procedures to assess the risks of material misstatement of the consolidated financial statements, whether due to error or fraud, and performing procedures that respond to those risks. Such procedures included examining, on a test basis, evidence regarding the amounts and disclosures in the consolidated financial statements. Our audits also included evaluating the accounting principles used and significant estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the consolidated financial statements. We believe that our audits provide a reasonable basis for our opinion.
Critical Audit Matter
The critical audit matter communicated below is a matter arising from the current period audit of the consolidated financial statements that was communicated or required to be communicated to the audit committee and that: (1) relates to accounts or disclosures that are material to the consolidated financial statements and (2) involved our especially challenging, subjective, or complex judgments. The communication of a critical audit matter does not alter in any way our opinion on the consolidated financial statements, taken as a whole, and we are not, by communicating the critical audit matter below, providing a separate opinion on the critical audit matter or on the accounts or disclosures to which it relates.
16


Evaluation of self-insurance reserves
As discussed in Note 1(k) to the consolidated financial statements, the Company estimates its self-insurance reserves for workers’ compensation and general liability exposures by considering historical claims experience and actuarial analyses using actuarial assumptions and generally accepted actuarial methods. The self-insurance reserves balance as of December 26, 2020 of $397 million includes the self-insurance reserves related to workers’ compensation and general liability. The Company engages actuaries to estimate its workers’ compensation and general liability self-insurance reserves at least annually.
We identified the evaluation of the Company’s workers’ compensation and general liability self-insurance reserves as a critical audit matter because of the specialized skills necessary to evaluate the Company’s key assumption, the loss development factors, and the selection of the actuarial projections derived from various actuarial methods.
The following are the primary procedures we performed to address this critical audit matter. We evaluated the design of certain internal controls related to the workers’ compensation and general liability actuarial projections. This included controls related to the loss development factors used to estimate the actuarial projections and the selection of the actuarial projections derived from various actuarial methods. We involved actuarial professionals with specialized skills and knowledge who assisted in:
Assessing the actuarial models used by the Company for consistency with generally accepted actuarial standards;
Evaluating the Company’s ability to estimate self-insurance reserves by comparing its historical estimates with actual incurred losses; and
Evaluating the key assumption, the loss development factors, and actuarial projections by developing an independent expectation of the workers’ compensation and general liability self-insurance reserves and comparing them to the amounts recorded by the Company.
/s/ KPMG LLP
We have served as the Company’s auditor since 1961.
Tampa, Florida
March 1, 2021




17
 


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Consolidated Balance Sheets
December 26, 2020 and
December 28, 2019
 
2020 2019
ASSETS (Amounts are in thousands)
Current assets:
Cash and cash equivalents $ 673,483  763,382 
Short-term investments 682,965  438,105 
Trade receivables 917,531  737,093 
Inventories 2,033,792  1,913,310 
Prepaid expenses 110,025  75,710 
Total current assets 4,417,796  3,927,600 
Long-term investments 10,605,234  7,988,280 
Other noncurrent assets 415,103  441,938 
Operating lease right-of-use assets 2,965,424  2,964,780 
Property, plant and equipment:
Land 2,059,274  1,984,400 
Buildings and improvements 6,379,852  5,948,039 
Furniture, fixtures and equipment 5,796,442  5,477,534 
Leasehold improvements 1,764,326  1,660,164 
Construction in progress 257,099  152,272 
16,256,993  15,222,409 
Accumulated depreciation (6,566,473) (6,037,887)
Net property, plant and equipment 9,690,520  9,184,522 
$ 28,094,077  24,507,120 

See accompanying notes to consolidated financial statements.
18


2020 2019
LIABILITIES AND EQUITY (Amounts are in thousands,
except par value)
Current liabilities:
Accounts payable $ 2,414,798  1,984,761 
Accrued expenses:
Contributions to retirement plans 639,581  581,699 
Self-insurance reserves 161,223  149,082 
Salaries and wages 197,721  148,662 
Other 499,970  461,427 
Current portion of long-term debt 36,392  39,692 
Current portion of operating lease liabilities 345,805  335,391 
Federal and state income taxes 71,354  — 
Total current liabilities 4,366,844  3,700,714 
Deferred income taxes 772,722  682,484 
Self-insurance reserves 235,858  226,727 
Accrued postretirement benefit cost 131,356  120,015 
Long-term debt 123,835  131,997 
Operating lease liabilities 2,588,258  2,603,206 
Other noncurrent liabilities 589,340  140,633 
Total liabilities 8,808,213  7,605,776 
Common stock related to Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) 3,484,549  3,259,230 
Stockholders’ equity:
Common stock of $1 par value. Authorized 1,000,000 shares; issued
and outstanding 690,982 shares in 2020 and 706,552 shares in 2019
690,982  706,552 
Additional paid-in capital 4,005,969  3,758,066 
Retained earnings 14,343,865  12,317,478 
Accumulated other comprehensive earnings 200,951  81,289 
Common stock related to ESOP (3,484,549) (3,259,230)
Total stockholders’ equity 15,757,218  13,604,155 
Noncontrolling interests 44,097  37,959 
Total equity 19,285,864  16,901,344 
Commitments and contingencies —  — 
$ 28,094,077  24,507,120 


19
 


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Consolidated Statements of Earnings
Years ended December 26, 2020, December 28, 2019
and December 29, 2018

2020 2019 2018
(Amounts are in thousands, except per share amounts)
Revenues:
Sales $ 44,863,507  38,116,402  36,093,907 
Other operating income 340,452  346,351  301,811 
Total revenues 45,203,959  38,462,753  36,395,718 
Costs and expenses:
Cost of merchandise sold 32,354,606  27,740,469  26,311,391 
Operating and administrative expenses 8,837,380  7,833,035  7,339,924 
Total costs and expenses 41,191,986  35,573,504  33,651,315 
Operating profit 4,011,973  2,889,249  2,744,403 
Investment income 975,006  814,372  56,699 
Other nonoperating income, net 49,676  82,365  119,866 
Earnings before income tax expense 5,036,655  3,785,986  2,920,968 
Income tax expense 1,064,817  780,591  539,801 
Net earnings $ 3,971,838  3,005,395  2,381,167 
Weighted average shares outstanding 700,587  713,535  726,407 
Earnings per share $ 5.67  4.21  3.28 
See accompanying notes to consolidated financial statements.
20
 


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Consolidated Statements of Comprehensive Earnings
Years ended December 26, 2020, December 28, 2019
and December 29, 2018

2020 2019 2018
(Amounts are in thousands)
Net earnings $ 3,971,838  3,005,395  2,381,167 
Other comprehensive earnings:
Unrealized gain (loss) on debt securities net of income taxes of $47,253, $50,504 and $(6,521) in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively.
138,989  148,141  (19,126)
Reclassification adjustment for net realized (gain) loss on debt securities net of income taxes of $(4,616), $(205) and $118 in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively.
(13,591) (602) 346 
Adjustment to postretirement benefit obligation net of income taxes of $(1,955), $(3,576) and $2,963 in 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively.
(5,736) (10,488) 8,692 
Comprehensive earnings $ 4,091,500  3,142,446  2,371,079 

See accompanying notes to consolidated financial statements.
21
 


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows
Years ended December 26, 2020, December 28, 2019
and December 29, 2018

2020 2019 2018
(Amounts are in thousands)
Cash flows from operating activities:
Cash received from customers $ 44,885,680  38,269,943  36,296,870 
Cash paid to employees and suppliers (38,844,539) (34,017,408) (32,177,582)
Income taxes paid (789,711) (373,172) (563,983)
Self-insured claims paid (384,044) (394,495) (395,457)
Dividends and interest received 241,639  217,574  192,528 
Other operating cash receipts 336,244  341,929  297,098 
Other operating cash payments (21,052) (19,940) (17,548)
Net cash provided by operating activities 5,424,217  4,024,431  3,631,926 
Cash flows from investing activities:
Payment for capital expenditures (1,228,387) (1,141,118) (1,350,089)
Proceeds from sale of property, plant and equipment 10,297  8,609  43,834 
Payment for investments (5,356,844) (3,237,807) (2,778,691)
Proceeds from sale and maturity of investments 3,146,473  2,113,287  2,342,162 
Net cash used in investing activities (3,428,461) (2,257,029) (1,742,784)
Cash flows from financing activities:
Payment for acquisition of common stock (1,440,312) (1,088,570) (1,405,872)
Proceeds from sale of common stock 249,808  311,950  307,933 
Dividends paid (884,369) (828,733) (734,510)
Repayment of long-term debt (28,374) (11,061) (43,593)
Other, net 17,592  13,130  6,239 
Net cash used in financing activities (2,085,655) (1,603,284) (1,869,803)
Net (decrease) increase in cash and cash equivalents (89,899) 164,118  19,339 
Cash and cash equivalents at beginning of year 763,382  599,264  579,925 
Cash and cash equivalents at end of year $ 673,483  763,382  599,264 









See accompanying notes to consolidated financial statements.
22


2020 2019 2018
(Amounts are in thousands)
Reconciliation of net earnings to net cash provided by operating activities:
Net earnings $ 3,971,838  3,005,395  2,381,167 
Adjustments to reconcile net earnings to net cash
provided by operating activities:
Depreciation and amortization
736,531  716,669  677,154 
Increase in last-in, first out (LIFO) reserve
19,752  39,939  24,170 
Retirement contributions paid or payable in
common stock
418,311  409,614  373,350 
Deferred income taxes
49,556  215,004  63,245 
Loss (gain) on disposal and impairment of long-lived
assets
138,573  11,036  (13,185)
(Gain) loss on investments (775,571) (627,624) 73,254 
Net amortization of investments
54,107  42,753  63,654 
Change in operating assets and liabilities providing (requiring) cash:
Trade receivables
(180,438) (54,890) (10,790)
Inventories
(140,234) (104,514) 3,614 
Other assets
151,714  136,796  199,930 
Accounts payable and accrued expenses
615,521  181,154  112,383 
Federal and state income taxes
58,901  40,548  (313,989)
Other liabilities
305,656  12,551  (2,031)
Total adjustments
1,452,379  1,019,036  1,250,759 
Net cash provided by operating activities $ 5,424,217  4,024,431  3,631,926 


23
 


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Consolidated Statements of Stockholders’ Equity
Years ended December 26, 2020, December 28, 2019
and December 29, 2018
Common
Stock
Additional
Paid-in
Capital
Retained
Earnings
Common
Stock
(Acquired
from) Sold to
Stock-
holders
Accumu-
lated Other
Compre-
hensive
Earnings
(Losses)
Common
Stock
Related to
ESOP
Total
Stock-
holders’
Equity
(Amounts are in thousands, except per share amounts)
Balances at December 30, 2017 $ 733,440  3,139,647  10,044,564  —  152,636  (3,053,138) 11,017,149 
Comprehensive earnings —  —  2,381,167  —  (10,088) —  2,371,079 
Dividends, $1.01 per share
—  —  (734,510) —  —  —  (734,510)
Contribution of 8,440 shares to retirement plans
6,221  261,423  —  81,780  —  —  349,424 
Acquisition of 33,770 shares from stockholders
—  —  —  (1,405,872) —  —  (1,405,872)
Sale of 7,335 shares to stockholders
1,380  56,934  —  249,619  —  —  307,933 
Retirement of 25,596 shares
(25,596) —  (1,048,877) 1,074,473  —  —  — 
Change for ESOP related shares —  —  —  —  —  (81,861) (81,861)
Cumulative effect of net unrealized gain on equity securities reclassified to retained earnings —  —  198,310  —  (198,310) —  — 
Balances at December 29, 2018 715,445  3,458,004  10,840,654  —  (55,762) (3,134,999) 11,823,342 
Comprehensive earnings —  —  3,005,395  —  137,051  —  3,142,446 
Dividends, $1.16 per share
—  —  (828,733) —  —  —  (828,733)
Contribution of 8,587 shares to retirement plans
5,605  235,017  —  127,329  —  —  367,951 
Acquisition of 24,506 shares from stockholders
—  —  —  (1,088,570) —  —  (1,088,570)
Sale of 7,026 shares to stockholders
1,497  65,045  —  245,408  —  —  311,950 
Retirement of 15,995 shares
(15,995) —  (699,838) 715,833  —  —  — 
Change for ESOP related shares —  —  —  —  —  (124,231) (124,231)
Balances at December 28, 2019 706,552  3,758,066  12,317,478  —  81,289  (3,259,230) 13,604,155 
Comprehensive earnings —  —  3,971,838  —  119,662  —  4,091,500 
Dividends, $1.26 per share
—  —  (884,369) —  —  —  (884,369)
Contribution of 7,398 shares to retirement plan
4,977  242,724  —  114,054  —  —  361,755 
Acquisition of 27,797 shares from stockholders
—  —  —  (1,440,312) —  —  (1,440,312)
Sale of 4,829 shares to stockholders
107  5,179  —  244,522  —  —  249,808 
Retirement of 20,654 shares
(20,654) —  (1,061,082) 1,081,736  —  —  — 
Change for ESOP related shares —  —  —  —  —  (225,319) (225,319)
Balances at December 26, 2020 $ 690,982  4,005,969  14,343,865  —  200,951  (3,484,549) 15,757,218 
See accompanying notes to consolidated financial statements.
24
 


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

(1)    Summary of Significant Accounting Policies
(a)Business
Publix Super Markets, Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiaries (Company) are in the business of operating retail food supermarkets in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. The Company was founded in 1930 and later merged into another corporation that was originally incorporated in 1921. The Company has no other significant lines of business or industry segments.
(b)Principles of Consolidation
The consolidated financial statements include the accounts of the Company, its wholly owned subsidiaries and certain joint ventures in which the Company has a controlling financial interest. All significant intercompany balances and transactions are eliminated in consolidation.
(c)Fiscal Year
The Company’s fiscal year ends on the last Saturday in December. Fiscal years 2020, 2019 and 2018 include 52 weeks.
(d)Cash Equivalents
The Company considers all liquid investments with maturities of three months or less to be cash equivalents.
(e)Trade Receivables
Trade receivables primarily include amounts due from vendor rebates, debit and credit card sales and third party insurance pharmacy billings.
(f)Inventories
Inventories are valued at the lower of cost or market. The dollar value last-in, first-out (LIFO) method was used to determine the cost for 84% and 85% of inventories as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019, respectively. Under this method, inventory is stated at cost, which is determined by applying a cost-to-retail ratio to each similar merchandise category’s ending retail value. The cost of the remaining inventories was determined using the first-in, first-out (FIFO) method. The FIFO cost of inventory approximates replacement or current cost. The FIFO method is used to value certain manufactured, seasonal, perishable and other miscellaneous inventory items due to fluctuating costs and inconsistent product availability. The Company also reduces inventory for estimated losses related to shrink. If all inventories were valued using the FIFO method, inventories and current assets would have been higher than reported by $548,749,000 and $528,997,000 as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019, respectively.
(g)Investments
In 2020, the Company adopted the Accounting Standards Update (ASU) requiring companies to recognize credit losses on debt securities in earnings through an allowance that is reevaluated each reporting period. The Company adopted the ASU on a prospective basis as of December 29, 2019. Prior to the adoption of the ASU, credit losses in which the Company did not expect to recover the cost of the debt security were recognized in earnings as an other-than-temporary impairment. The adoption of the ASU did not have a material effect on the Company’s financial position, results of operations or cash flows.
Debt securities are classified as available-for-sale and measured at fair value. The Company evaluates debt securities on an individual security basis to determine if an unrealized loss is due to a credit loss or other factors, including interest rate fluctuations. The collectability of debt securities is evaluated based on criteria that include the extent to which the cost (cost of the debt security adjusted for amortization of premium or accretion of discount) exceeds fair value, the credit rating of the issuer or security, the failure of the issuer to make scheduled principal or interest payments and the financial health and prospects of the issuer or security.
Credit losses on debt securities the Company does not intend to sell and will not be required to sell prior to any anticipated recovery are recognized in earnings through an allowance. The allowance is measured as the difference between the present value of expected cash flows and the cost of the debt security, limited to the difference between the cost and the fair value of the debt security. Expected cash flows are discounted using the debt security’s effective interest rate. Subsequent changes to the allowance are recognized in earnings in the period of the change. Credit losses on debt securities the Company intends to sell or will be required to sell prior to any anticipated recovery are recognized in earnings and measured as the difference between the cost and the fair value of the debt security.


25


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

Other unrealized losses on debt securities the Company does not intend to sell and will not be required to sell prior to any anticipated recovery are reported in other comprehensive earnings net of income taxes and included as a component of stockholders’ equity. Other unrealized losses on debt securities the Company intends to sell or will be required to sell prior to any anticipated recovery are recognized in earnings and measured as the difference between the cost and the fair value of the debt security.
Equity securities are measured at fair value with net unrealized gains and losses from changes in the fair value recognized in earnings (fair value adjustment).
Interest and dividend income, amortization of premiums, accretion of discounts and realized gains and losses on debt and equity securities are included in investment income. Interest income is accrued as earned. Dividend income is recognized as income on the ex-dividend date. The cost of debt and equity securities sold is based on the specific identification method.
(h)Leases
The Company conducts a major portion of its retail operations from leased locations. The Company determines whether a lease exists at inception. Initial lease terms are typically 20 years followed by five year renewal options and may include rent escalation clauses. The Company recognizes right-of-use assets and lease liabilities based on the present value of future lease payments. Future lease payments include the initial lease term and any renewal options to the extent it is reasonably certain the option will be exercised. The present value of future lease payments is determined by using the Company’s incremental borrowing rate at the time of lease commencement. The incremental borrowing rate is estimated based on a composite index of debt for similarly rated companies with comparable terms.
Operating lease expense primarily represents fixed lease payments for operating leases recognized on a straight-line basis over the applicable lease term. Variable lease expense represents the payment of real estate taxes, insurance, maintenance and, for certain locations, additional rentals based on a percentage of sales in excess of stipulated minimums (excess rent). The payment of variable real estate taxes, insurance and maintenance is generally based on the Company’s pro-rata share of total shopping center square footage. The Company estimates excess rent, where applicable, based on annual sales projections and uses the straight-line method to amortize the cost. The annual sales projections are reviewed periodically and adjusted if necessary.
(i)Property, Plant and Equipment and Depreciation
Assets are recorded at cost and depreciated or amortized using the straight-line method over their estimated useful lives or the terms of the related leases, if shorter, as follows: buildings and improvements (10–40 years); furniture, fixtures and equipment (3–20 years); and leasehold improvements (10–20 years).
Maintenance and repairs are expensed as incurred. Expenditures for renewals and betterments are capitalized. The gain or loss realized on disposed assets or assets to be disposed of is recorded in earnings.
(j)Long-Lived Assets
The Company reviews its long-lived assets for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the net book value of an asset may not be recoverable. Recoverability of assets to be held and used is measured by a comparison of the net book value of an asset to the future net undiscounted cash flows expected to be generated by the asset. An impairment loss is recorded for the excess of the net book value over the fair value of the asset. The fair value is estimated based on expected discounted future cash flows. Assets to be disposed of are reported at the lower of the carrying amount or fair value less cost to sell and are no longer depreciated or amortized. Long-lived assets, including operating lease right-of-use assets, buildings and improvements, leasehold improvements, and furniture, fixtures and equipment, are evaluated for impairment at the supermarket level.
(k)Self-Insurance
The Company is generally self-insured for claims related to health care, employee benefits, workers’ compensation, general liability, property, plant and equipment, fleet liability and directors and officers liability. The Company uses third party insurance in certain instances to partially mitigate the risk related to these potential losses. Self-insurance reserves are established for health care, workers’ compensation, general liability and fleet liability claims. These reserves are determined based on actual claims experience and an estimate of claims incurred but not reported including, where necessary, actuarial studies. Actuarial projections of losses for general liability and workers’ compensation claims are discounted.

26


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

(l)Postretirement Benefit
The Company provides a postretirement life insurance benefit for certain salaried and hourly full-time employees who meet the eligibility requirements. Effective January 1, 2002, the Company amended the postretirement life insurance benefit under its Group Life Insurance Plan. To receive the postretirement life insurance benefit after the amendment, an employee must have had at least five years of full-time service and the employee’s age plus years of credited service must have equaled 65 or greater as of October 1, 2001. At retirement, such employees also must be at least age 55 with at least 10 years of full-time service to be eligible to receive the postretirement life insurance benefit.
Actuarial projections are used to calculate the year end postretirement benefit obligation, discounted using a yield curve methodology based on high quality bonds with a rating of AA or better. Actuarial losses are amortized from accumulated other comprehensive earnings into net periodic postretirement benefit cost over future years when the accumulation of such losses exceeds 10% of the year end postretirement benefit obligation.
(m)Comprehensive Earnings
Comprehensive earnings include net earnings and other comprehensive earnings. Other comprehensive earnings include revenues, expenses, gains and losses that have been excluded from net earnings and recorded directly to stockholders’ equity. Included in other comprehensive earnings are certain unrealized gains and losses on debt securities and adjustments to the postretirement benefit obligation net of income taxes.
(n)Revenue Recognition
The Company sells grocery (including dairy, produce, floral, deli, bakery, meat and seafood), health and beauty care, general merchandise, pharmacy and other products and services. Grocery was 85% of sales for 2020 and 84% of sales for 2019 and 2018. All other products and services were 15% of sales for 2020 and 16% of sales for 2019 and 2018.
Revenue is recognized at the point of sale for retail sales. Customer returns are immaterial. Vendor coupons that are reimbursed are accounted for as sales. Coupons and other sales incentives offered by the Company that are not reimbursed are recorded as a reduction of sales. The Company records sales net of applicable sales taxes.
(o)Other Operating Income
Other operating income is recognized on a net basis as earned. Other operating income includes income generated from other activities, primarily automated teller transaction fees, licensee sales commissions, lottery commissions, mall gift card commissions, money order commissions, money transfer fees and vending machine commissions.
(p)Cost of Merchandise Sold
Cost of merchandise sold includes costs of inventory and costs related to in-store production. Cost of merchandise sold also includes inbound freight charges, purchasing and receiving costs, warehousing costs and other costs of the Company’s distribution network.
Rebates received from a vendor in connection with the purchase or promotion of the vendor’s products are recognized as a reduction of cost of merchandise sold as earned. These vendor rebates are recognized as earned in accordance with the underlying agreement with the vendor and completion of the earnings process. Short-term vendor agreements with advance payment provisions are recorded as a current liability and recognized over the appropriate period as earned according to the underlying agreements. Long-term vendor agreements with advance payment provisions are recorded as a noncurrent liability and recognized over the appropriate period as earned according to the underlying agreements.
(q)Advertising Costs
Advertising costs are expensed as incurred and were $244,839,000, $245,403,000 and $249,123,000 for 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively.
(r)Other Nonoperating Income, net
Other nonoperating income, net includes rent from tenants in owned shopping centers, net of related expenses, and other miscellaneous nonoperating income.


27


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

(s)Income Taxes
Deferred income taxes are established for temporary differences between financial and tax reporting bases and are subsequently adjusted to reflect changes in income tax rates expected to be in effect when the temporary differences reverse. The Company recognizes accrued interest and penalties related to income tax liabilities as a component of income tax expense. The Company invests in certain investment related tax credits that promote affordable housing and renewable energy. These investments generate a return primarily through the realization of federal and state tax credits and other tax benefits. The Company accounts for its affordable housing investments using the proportional amortization method. Under this method, the investment is amortized into income tax expense in proportion to the tax credits received and the investment tax credits are recognized as a reduction of income tax expense. The Company accounts for its renewable energy investments using the deferral method. Under this method, the investment tax credits are recognized as a reduction of the renewable energy investments.
(t)Common Stock and Earnings Per Share
Earnings per share is calculated by dividing net earnings by the weighted average shares outstanding. Basic and diluted earnings per share are the same because the Company does not have options or other stock compensation programs that impact the calculation of diluted earnings per share. All shares owned by the Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) are included in the earnings per share calculations. Dividends paid to the ESOP, as well as dividends on all other common stock shares, are reflected as a reduction of retained earnings. All common stock shares, including ESOP and 401(k) Plan shares, receive one vote per share and have the same dividend rights. The voting rights for ESOP shares allocated to participants’ accounts are passed through to the participants. The Trustee of the Company’s common stock in the 401(k) Plan votes the shares held in that plan.
(u)Use of Estimates
The preparation of financial statements in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities and disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities as of the date of the financial statements and the reported amounts of revenues and expenses during the reporting period. Actual results could differ from those estimates.
 
(2)    Fair Value of Financial Instruments
The fair value of certain of the Company’s financial instruments, including cash and cash equivalents, trade receivables and accounts payable, approximates their respective carrying amounts due to their short-term maturity.
The fair value of investments is based on market prices using the following measurement categories:
Level 1 – Fair value is determined by using quoted prices in active markets for identical investments. Investments included in this category are equity securities (exchange traded funds and individual equity securities).
Level 2 – Fair value is determined by using other than quoted prices. By using observable inputs (for example, benchmark yields, interest rates, reported trades and broker dealer quotes), the fair value is determined through processes such as benchmark curves, benchmarking of similar securities and matrix pricing of corporate, state and municipal bonds by using pricing of similar bonds based on coupons, ratings and maturities. Investments included in this category are primarily debt securities (tax exempt and taxable bonds), including restricted investments in taxable bonds held as collateral.
Level 3 – Fair value is determined by using other than observable inputs. Fair value is determined by using the best information available in the circumstances and requires significant management judgment or estimation. No investments are currently included in this category.
Following is a summary of fair value measurements for investments as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019:
Fair Value Level 1 Level 2 Level 3
(Amounts are in thousands)
December 26, 2020 $ 11,288,199  1,465,987  9,822,212  — 
December 28, 2019 8,426,385  2,028,547  6,397,838  — 

28
 


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

(3)    Investments
(a)Debt Securities
Following is a summary of debt securities as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019:
Cost
Gross
Unrealized
Gains
Gross
Unrealized
Losses
Fair Value
(Amounts are in thousands)
2020
Tax exempt bonds $ 548,438  7,408  88  555,758 
Taxable bonds 8,182,003  286,745  8,324  8,460,424 
Restricted investments 167,727  14,383  —  182,110 
$ 8,898,168  308,536  8,412  9,198,292 
2019
Tax exempt bonds $ 767,931  3,429  130  771,230 
Taxable bonds 5,002,036  120,132  1,443  5,120,725 
Restricted investments 169,983  10,101  —  180,084 
$ 5,939,950  133,662  1,573  6,072,039 
The Company maintains restricted investments primarily for the benefit of the Company’s insurance carrier related to self-insurance reserves. These investments are held as collateral and not used for claim payments.
The cost and fair value of debt securities by expected maturity as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019 are as follows:
  
2020 2019
Cost
Fair
Value
Cost
Fair
Value
(Amounts are in thousands)
Due in one year or less $ 677,453  682,965  437,236  438,105 
Due after one year through five years 5,330,696  5,533,074  3,836,333  3,900,904 
Due after five years through ten years 2,886,333  2,978,301  1,661,143  1,727,594 
Due after ten years 3,686  3,952  5,238  5,436 
$ 8,898,168  9,198,292  5,939,950  6,072,039 


29


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

The Company had no debt securities with credit losses as of December 26, 2020.
Following is a summary of debt securities with other unrealized losses by the time period impaired as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019:
Less Than
12 Months
12 Months
or Longer
Total
Fair
Value
Unrealized
Losses
Fair
Value
Unrealized
Losses
Fair
Value
Unrealized
Losses
(Amounts are in thousands)
2020
Tax exempt bonds $ 3,704  88  —  —  3,704  88 
Taxable bonds 1,157,387  7,946  39,622  378  1,197,009  8,324 
$ 1,161,091  8,034  39,622  378  1,200,713  8,412 
2019
Tax exempt bonds $ 48,462  11  99,976  119  148,438  130 
Taxable bonds 573,315  888  197,641  555  770,956  1,443 
$ 621,777  899  297,617  674  919,394  1,573 
There are 51 debt securities contributing to the total unrealized losses of $8,412,000 as of December 26, 2020. Unrealized losses related to debt securities are primarily due to increases in interest rates that occurred since the debt securities were purchased. The Company continues to receive scheduled principal and interest payments on these debt securities.
(b)Equity Securities
The fair value of equity securities was $2,089,907,000 and $2,354,346,000 as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019, respectively.
(c)Investment Income
Net realized gain on investments represents the difference between the cost and the proceeds from the sale of debt and equity securities. The net realized gain on investments excludes the net gain or loss on the sale of equity securities previously recognized through the fair value adjustment, which is presented separately in the following table.
Following is a summary of investment income for 2020, 2019 and 2018:
2020 2019 2018
  (Amounts are in thousands)
Interest and dividend income $ 199,435  186,748  129,953 
Net realized gain on investments 396,584  104,905  109,547 
596,019  291,653  239,500 
Fair value adjustment, due to net unrealized gain (loss), on equity securities held at end of year 554,547  472,490  (107,466)
Net (gain) loss on sale of equity securities previously recognized through fair value adjustment (175,560) 50,229  (75,335)
$ 975,006  814,372  56,699 

30
 


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

(4)    Leases
(a)Lessee
In 2019, the Company adopted the ASU requiring the lease rights and obligations arising from existing and new lease agreements be recognized as assets and liabilities on the balance sheet. The Company adopted the ASU on a modified retrospective basis and elected the transitional provisions eliminating the requirement to restate reporting periods prior to the date of adoption. The adoption of the ASU did not have a material effect on the Company’s results of operations and had no effect on the Company’s cash flows.
Following is a summary of finance lease right-of-use assets included in net property, plant and equipment and finance lease liabilities included in other accrued expenses and other noncurrent liabilities as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019.
2020 2019
(Amounts are in thousands)
Finance lease right-of-use assets $ 291,556  154,217 
Finance lease liabilities:
Current
25,254  29,480 
Noncurrent 246,411  104,806 
Lease expense for 2020 and 2019 was as follows:
2020 2019
(Amounts are in thousands)
Operating lease expense $ 443,063  434,555 
Finance lease expense:
Amortization of right-of-use assets
9,850  8,128 
Interest on lease liabilities
4,651  3,105 
Variable lease expense 159,236  147,463 
Sublease rental income (2,819) (2,874)
$ 613,981  590,377 
Supplemental cash flow information related to leases for 2020 and 2019 was as follows:
2020 2019
(Amounts are in thousands)
Operating cash flows from rent paid for operating lease liabilities
$ 436,988  422,596 
Right-of-use assets obtained in exchange for new lease liabilities:
Operating leases
364,757  463,727 
Finance leases
174,307  65,539 

31


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

The weighted average remaining lease term and weighted average discount rate as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019 are as follows:
2020 2019
Weighted average remaining lease term:
Operating leases 12 years 12 years
Finance leases 19 years 18 years
Weighted average discount rate:
Operating leases 3.4  % 3.5  %
Finance leases 3.3  % 3.9  %
Maturities of lease liabilities as of December 26, 2020 are as follows:
Year
Operating
Leases
Finance
Leases
(Amounts are in thousands)
2021 $ 438,358  32,962 
2022 414,464  18,163 
2023 372,632  32,879 
2024 326,523  17,194 
2025 275,623  17,194 
Thereafter 1,797,109  233,575 
3,624,709  351,967 
Less: Imputed interest (690,646) (80,302)
$ 2,934,063  271,665 
As of December 26, 2020, the Company has lease agreements that have not yet commenced with fixed lease payments totaling $359,498,000. These leases will commence in future periods with terms ranging up to 20 years.
Prior to the adoption of the ASU, minimum rentals represented fixed lease obligations, including insurance and maintenance to the extent they were fixed in the lease. Contingent rentals represented variable lease obligations, including real estate taxes, insurance, maintenance and, for certain locations, excess rent. The Company recognized rent expense for operating leases with rent escalation clauses on a straight-line basis over the applicable lease term.
Total rental expense for 2018 was as follows:
2018
(Amounts are in thousands)
Minimum rentals $ 449,138 
Contingent rentals 133,382 
Sublease rental income (4,339)
$ 578,181 

32


PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

(b)    Lessor
The Company leases space in owned shopping centers to tenants under noncancelable operating leases. The Company determines whether a lease exists at inception. Initial lease terms are typically five years followed by five year renewal options and may include rent escalation clauses. Lease income primarily represents fixed lease payments from tenants recognized on a straight-line basis over the applicable lease term. Variable lease income represents tenant payments for real estate taxes, insurance, maintenance and, for certain locations, excess rent.
Total lease income was $172,309,000, $190,785,000 and $183,963,000 for 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively. Total lease income for 2020 and 2019 was as follows:
2020 2019
(Amounts are in thousands)
Lease income $ 133,512  149,313 
Variable lease income     38,797  41,472 
$ 172,309  190,785 
In 2020, the Company offered two months of rent relief to tenants in Company owned shopping centers that were impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The rent relief was recorded as a reduction to lease income and variable lease income.
Future fixed lease payments for all noncancelable operating leases as of December 26, 2020 are as follows:
Year
(Amounts are in thousands)
2021 $ 149,716 
2022 122,580 
2023 97,354 
2024 69,995 
2025 44,908 
Thereafter 159,256 
$ 643,809 

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PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

(5)    Consolidation of Joint Ventures and Long-Term Debt
From time to time, the Company enters into a joint venture (JV), in the legal form of a limited liability company, with certain real estate developers to partner in the development of a shopping center with the Company as the anchor tenant. The Company consolidates certain of these JVs in which it has a controlling financial interest. The Company is considered to have a controlling financial interest in a JV when it has (1) the power to direct the activities of the JV that most significantly impact the JV’s economic performance and (2) the obligation to absorb losses or the right to receive benefits from the JV that could potentially be significant to such JV.
The Company evaluates a JV using specific criteria to determine whether the Company has a controlling financial interest and is the primary beneficiary of the JV. Factors considered in determining whether the Company is the primary beneficiary include risk and reward sharing, experience and financial condition of the other JV members, voting rights, involvement in routine capital and operating decisions and each member’s influence over the JV owned shopping center’s economic performance.
Generally, most major JV decision making is shared between all members. In particular, the use and sale of JV assets, business plans and budgets are generally required to be approved by all members. However, the Company, through its anchor tenant operating lease agreement, has the power to direct the activities that most significantly influence the economic performance of the JV owned shopping center. Additionally, through its member equity interest in the JV, the Company will receive a significant portion of the JV’s benefits or is obligated to absorb a significant portion of the JV’s losses. Substantially all of the JVs are consolidated as the Company is the primary beneficiary of the JVs.
As of December 26, 2020, the carrying amounts of the assets and liabilities of the consolidated JVs were $199,230,000 and $77,565,000, respectively. As of December 28, 2019, the carrying amounts of the assets and liabilities of the consolidated JVs were $154,659,000 and $78,472,000, respectively. The assets are owned by and the liabilities are obligations of the JVs, not the Company, except for a portion of the long-term debt of certain JVs guaranteed by the Company. The JVs are financed with capital contributions from the members, loans and/or the cash flows generated by the JV owned shopping centers once in operation. Total earnings attributable to noncontrolling interests for 2020, 2019 and 2018 were immaterial. The Company’s involvement with these JVs does not have a significant effect on the Company’s financial condition, results of operations or cash flows.
The Company’s long-term debt results primarily from the consolidation of loans of certain JVs and loans assumed in connection with the acquisition of certain shopping centers with the Company as the anchor tenant. No loans were assumed during 2020 or 2019. Maturities of JV loans range from January 2021 through April 2027 and have variable interest rates based on a LIBOR index plus 175 to 250 basis points. Maturities of assumed shopping center loans range from April 2021 through January 2027 and have fixed interest rates ranging from 3.7% to 7.5%.
As of December 26, 2020, the aggregate annual maturities and scheduled payments of long-term debt are as follows:
Year
(Amounts are in thousands)
2021 $ 36,392 
2022 25,238 
2023 38,694 
2024 32,165 
2025 400 
Thereafter 27,338 
$ 160,227 
 


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PUBLIX SUPER MARKETS, INC.
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements

(6)    Retirement Plans
The Company has a trusteed, noncontributory ESOP for the benefit of eligible employees. The Company recognizes an expense related to the Company’s discretionary contribution to the ESOP that is approved by the Board of Directors each year. ESOP contributions can be made in Company common stock or cash. Compensation expense recorded for contributions to this plan was $417,800,000, $370,778,000 and $337,712,000 for 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively.
Since the Company’s common stock is not traded on an established securities market, the ESOP includes a put option for shares of the Company’s common stock distributed from the ESOP. Shares are distributed from the ESOP primarily to separated vested participants and certain eligible participants who elect to diversify their account balances. Under the Company’s administration of the ESOP’s put option, if the owners of distributed shares desire to sell their shares, the Company is required to purchase the shares at fair value for a specified time period after distribution of the shares from the ESOP. The fair value of distributed shares subject to the put option totaled $444,801,000 and $287,328,000 as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019, respectively. The cost of the shares held by the ESOP totaled $3,039,748,000 and $2,971,902,000 as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019, respectively. Due to the Company’s obligation under the put option, the distributed shares subject to the put option and the shares held by the ESOP are classified as temporary equity in the mezzanine section of the consolidated balance sheets and totaled $3,484,549,000 and $3,259,230,000 as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019, respectively. The fair value of the shares held by the ESOP totaled $9,976,034,000 and $8,585,189,000 as of December 26, 2020 and December 28, 2019, respectively.
The Company has a 401(k) Plan for the benefit of eligible employees. The 401(k) Plan is a voluntary defined contribution plan. Effective January 1, 2020, eligible employees may contribute up to 30% of their eligible annual compensation, subject to the maximum contribution limits established by federal law. Previously, eligible employees could contribute up to 10% of their eligible annual compensation, subject to the maximum contribution limits established by federal law. The Company may make a discretionary annual matching contribution to eligible participants of this plan as determined by the Board of Directors. During 2020, 2019 and 2018, the Board of Directors approved a match of 50% of eligible annual contributions up to 3% of eligible annual compensation, not to exceed a maximum match of $750 per employee. Compensation expense recorded for the Company’s match to the 401(k) Plan was $39,858,000, $38,112,000 and $34,980,000 for 2020, 2019 and 2018, respectively.
The Company intends to continue its retirement plans; however, the right to modify, amend, terminate or merge these plans has been reserved. In the event of termination, all amounts contributed under the plans must be paid to the participants or their beneficiaries.

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