Same result for me with RHEL 6.4:
[root@srv69 ~]# hwclock --show
Tue 07 May 2013 09:16:51 AM EST -0.813245 seconds
[root@srv69 ~]# hwclock --utc --show
Tue 07 May 2013 09:16:54 AM EST -0.828727 seconds
[root@srv69 ~]# hwclock --localtime --show
Mon 06 May 2013 11:16:59 PM EST -0.094327 seconds
man hwclock, explains a little better:
--localtime :Indicates that the Hardware Clock is kept in Coordinated Universal Time or local time, respectively.
It is your choice whether to keep your clock in UTC or localtime, but nothing in the clock tells which youâve chosen. So this option is how you give that information to hwclock.
If you specify the wrong one of these options (or specify neither and take a wrong default), both setting and querying of the Hardware Clock will be messed up.
If you specify neither --utc nor --localtime , the default is whichever was specified the last time hwclock was used to set the clock (i.e. hwclock was successfully
run with the --set, --systohc, or --adjust options), as recorded in the adjtime file. If the adjtime file doesnât exist, the default is local time.