with you more. Maybe with the 'services' provided
you can command 10-15% more but certainly not double.
And you are right about corporate control. They are
almost impossible to get to listen to 'local control'
ideas. They have always continued to try to run their
various entities from Philly - with the same people that
control the utility and with the same utility mind-set.
Makes it rough out there where the rubber meets the
road. By the way, Who IS in charge of the day to day
operations and decision making??? If it's someone that can't
or isn't allowed to make a decision in 24 hrs. APU
will ALWAYS be behind the competitive curve, and in
trouble of some sort. Frustrating? Yes. Job threating?
Not unless they decide to spin you off because they
simply can't keep up with the timely and necessary
decisions that MUST be made.
Propane is a great
thing and a good business, but like any
GOOD,COMPETITIVE, GROWTH business, it has to be given the ability
and complete latitude to be MANAGED TO RUN, not
coddled(like a utility).
for the words of encouragement. AmeriGas is going
to have to learn to compete on a local level. You
cannot set a price nationwide just because your margin
has to be met. I have competitors who have an intro
price of 49 cents a gallon, and their regular price is
69 cents while we are almost double that. You can
preach service all you want to, but when you have a
price difference 60 cents a gallon, that message falls
on deaf ears. You also have to have experienced
employees, not just trained, but experienced, in order to
give good service. None of the propane companys are
retaining employees because they will not pay a fair wage.
Anyone can go to work in a factory and make more money
than they can in the propane industry, and that is
what is happening. The company is not taking enough
time to give new employees basic training either.
1. Thou shalt pay the dividend
2. Thou shalt
pay the dividend
3. Thou shalt pay the
4. Thou shalt pay the dividend
5. Thou shalt
pay the dividend
6. Thou shalt pay the
7. Thou shalt pay the dividend
8. Thou shalt
pay the dividend
9. Thou shalt pay the
10. Thou shalt pay the dividend
I've owned APU for several years and never seen
anything like this price drop. It did hit 16 or 17 a year
or so ago. This winter is not much different from
last so why the dramatic price change? Also, shouldn't
we see a spurt from Y2K. Do you think the company is
in real (or any) financial trouble. Thanks for your
The drop in all propane MLP's stock is just a
reflection of the low margin, high cost, warm winter, just
get in about $10 and watch it go to $30 next winter.
I bet it has a few bankers worried, can AllStar,
StarGas, Ferrellgas, etc. make it? probably but it will
really set them back for a while, they have to buy to
keep cashflow up.
those trucks. I mean, just how thin can it (the
employee base) get? Transports and delivery trucks have
got to be driven by somebody and logistics demand
somebody has to deliver TODAY even if its just a 500
gallon day. Just because John Q. isn't interested in APU
doesn't mean it's losing it's customer base, or is it?
The weather will drive APU. Good service in the lean
times MUST be a priority so the customers will be there
when Old Man Winter decides to get tough. The last
thing APU will do is lay off employees who can deliver,
unless they decide to shut down operations in some minor
markets and if its a minor market, what were they doing
there in the first place.
So, for today's real
question. Do we load up and cheapen our investment @ $13
for a 17% return, or do we wait for it to hit $10 and
get 22% and really lower our average.
as debt service vs. distribution goes - if there is
only ONE thing that UGI Holding Corp prides itself on
- its paying their dividends. Over 100 yrs. without
missing or backing off. They will find the money for Debt
service. Its just a matter of which pocket they're going
to get it out of.
Next, IMHO, let's see where
it settles off in the next 2 or 3 days, then grab
some. This is a GREAT buy at this point. I'm just
sittin' here like an old wolf waiting to see just how fat
this little hog is gonna get.
Billy, I've been wrong before, but my gut feeling tells
me to tell you - don't worry, be happy. Papa