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  • Roger S. Conrad

Roger S. Conrad needs no introduction to individual and professional investors, many of whom have profited from his decades of experience uncovering the best dividend-paying stocks for accumulating sustainable wealth.

Roger built his reputation with Utility Forecaster, a publication he founded more than 20 years ago that The Hulbert Financial Digest routinely ranked as one of the best investment newsletters. He’s also a sought-after expert on master limited partnerships (MLP) and former Canadian royalty trusts.

In April 2013, Roger reunited with his long-time friend and colleague, Elliott Gue, becoming co-editor of Energy & Income Advisor, a semimonthly online newsletter that’s dedicated to uncovering the most profitable opportunities in the energy sector.

Although the masthead may have changed, readers can count on Roger to deliver the same high-quality analysis and rational assessment of the best dividend-paying utilities, MLPs and dividend-paying Canadian energy names.

Articles

Endangered Dividends List

Amerigas Partners’ (NYSE: APU) merger terms with general partner UGI Corp (NYSE: UGI) imply a roughly 83 percent cut in the dividend when the deal closes. That eventuality has been known by investors for two weeks and is therefore baked into the price. Therefore, while we do advise moving on from Amerigas, the MLP is now off the Endangered Dividends List.

Regulatory Risks: Real and Rising but so is Opportunity

Last November, Colorado voters defeated Proposition 112, a ballot measure that would have imposed significant new limits on oil and gas drilling. This month, the state’s senate advanced legislation that would have much the same impact, if the state house and governor give their assent as expected.

By no means will the new law end energy production in Colorado. But it will for the first time allow city and county governments to use planning and land-use powers to regulate drilling, and with a mandate to prioritize public health and the environment. At a minimum, that means more hurdles for companies to jump through before they drill or build new midstream infrastructure, at least in some jurisdictions.

As our feature article highlights, the “Centennial State” isn’t the only place in the US that’s tightening regulation of energy companies. Even Oklahoma has ramped up industry oversight in recent years, following a dramatic increase in earthquakes.

Endangered Dividends List

American Midstream Partners (NYSE: AMID) has received its likely best and final takeover offer from general partner ArcLight Capital Partners LLC. ArcLight last year bid $6.10 per share in cash for AMID units, before cutting it to $4.50 in the wake of disappointing operating results. The newly agreed on offer of $5.25 per unit in cash appears likely to win needed approvals and to close in coming weeks.

Endangered Dividends

There have been no additional dividend cuts in our three coverage universes since the previous EIA issue. That’s largely a function of timing, as companies are winding up the calendar first quarter and won’t be declaring their next distributions until next month.

However, calendar fourth quarter reporting requires considerably more legal filings. That means it typically takes several weeks longer for many companies to compete filings than it does other times of the year. And the good news is several later reporters did come in with encouraging news and guidance.

Can Energy Stay Hot?

Energy stocks are showing real signs 2019 will be the year they break out of a nearly five-year slump.

Both the S&P 500 Energy Index and the Alerian MLP Index posted total returns in the low teens for the first two months of 2019. That’s energy stocks’ best start to a calendar year since 2013, when those two indexes finished up 25 percent and 27.6 percent, respectively, en route to making all-time highs.

Benchmark WTI Cushing crude started 2013 in the low $90s per barrel, briefly broke down to the mid-$80s in April, then hit a high of $110 plus in late August before closing the year right around $100. Henry Hub gas, meanwhile, traded between $4 and $5 per thousand cubic foot for most of the year.

Those prices are a far cry from where we are now. But the trajectory of the commodities themselves has been generally encouraging in recent months. So is the fact that energy midstream master limited partnerships weren’t left out of this uptrend, as they were when oil rallied last year.

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  • Live Chat with

    Elliott and Roger on Sep. 27, 2019

  • Portfolios & Ratings

    • Model Portfolios

      Balanced portfolios of energy stocks for aggressive and conservative investors.

    • Producers and Drillers

      Our take on more than 50 energy-related equities, from upstream to downstream and everything in between.

    • MLPs and Midstream

      Our assessment of every energy-related master limited partnership.

    • International Coverage

      Roger Conrad’s coverage of more than 70 dividend-paying energy names.

    Experts

    • Elliott H. Gue

      Founder and Chief Analyst: Capitalist Times and Energy & Income Advisor

    • Roger S. Conrad

      Founder and Chief Analyst: Capitalist Times and Energy & Income Advisor