It obviously was no coincidence that the worst selling happened right before the end of the quarter, when funds need to square their books re: leverage ratios and debt covenants.
It's no coincidence that everything went to h*** on Sept 29 -- funds were liquidating positions ahead of quarter's end because most of them probably had to meet leverage restrictions and such. Sucks for them if they had to sell TRGP for $48/shr, but opportunity for us.
I don't think there is any fiduciary responsibilities -- as long as they're not violating the partnership agreement, there's not much that the limited partners could do about it. If the partnership agreement says they can take it private if A, B, and C happen, it's probably open-and-shut.
But if they do in fact wind up owning 80%, does it make sense to take it private, or leave the 20% as public float, and then squeeze it higher and let the market value of their 80% increase? If they leave a public stub, they can do things like place secondaries, etc at their convenience.
To reiterate what others have pointed out -- but what most superficial commentary ignores -- is that the big nasty potential tax hit isn't from the annual distribution, but when you sell the units. And ESPECIALLY with ETE, which is so freakin' complex you really have no idea what kind of taxable events might get created down the road. God only knows what they'll come up with next year or the year after. Please seriously consider selling your ETE now and either a) buying back in a taxable acct or b) buying a C-Corp MLP like KMI or PAGP or c) buying a CEF like KYE that pays out 1099 income and is perfect for IRAs.
You could also just buy WMB and wait for the exchange to ETC shares.
Personally, I think the odds favor a distribution cut of some sort -- coverage last quarter was less than 1, and by all indications, business conditions have clearly gotten worse, not better -- but on the other hand, they're probably better off than EMES. But I think if they maintain the distribution but coverage deteriorates, the market will react like a distribution cut anyway.
The flip side is, really, how much more can it sell off? I know "any stock can go to zero" but there isn't any serious question that this is still a viable business, it has to be worth *something.*
The two big problems with the MLP industry (that are the basis of most of the author's comments) are 1) lots of MLPs do in fact pay out more than they should, so when times get tough there is no margin for error, and 2) so many MLPs are crippled by IDRs that converting back to a C-Corp is the only thing that makes sense at some point. But companies like EPD (and MMP and a couple others) are smart enough to organize their business affairs to avoid those issues, so MLP structure still makes perfect sense.
Looks a lot like 2008... my portfolio was holding up fine until Lehman went under, then my whole portfolio went down something like 25% in two weeks as all sorts of funds liquidated everything. Distribution season came and went, everyone raised their distributions as usual, and everything came back just fine.
IMO there's an excellent chance they don't have any more money... god help them if any of them had borrowed to buy shares. But expect lots of stock options to be handed out that will vest at current low prices.
I'm saying that ETE shareholders will wind up doing better at the expense of ETP shareholders, WMB will wind up doing better at the expense of WPZ shareholders, TRGP vs NGLS, etc. We can hope this is 2008 all over again, because that was the best buying opportunity in our lifetime. That's when I bought my first shares of ETE and yes they've done very very well, notwithstanding the last two months.
short answer is yes -- at some point in next year or two, ETE/WMB will definitely fold in the WPZ shares too, they just don't want to do it until the dust settles and they control 100% of the GP and they can do it cheaper, and at that point WPZ will get screwed over just like KMP unitholders. You will receive lower-yielding shares + a large tax bill so the parent company can advertise higher dividend growth. The lesson is that given a choice between owning the LP or GP, you always want to own the GP, LPs simply don't have a lot of rights/protection.
Keeping an eye on it because this type of company will be a great way to play a recovery in oil prices, but it still seems awfully pricey at this time considering the amount of the distribution and the fact that a good chunk of that is due to hedges that will roll off over the coming year. You can get a similar yield from plenty of blue-chip midstream companies that don't have nearly the commodity price risk.Would like to follow this for a couple more earnings announcements and see how they do.
what bodes poorly for HCLP is that last quarter they reported a rise in revenues and in sand *sold* but a sharp decrease in sand *deliveries* -- sand delivered was 30% less than sand sold, vs something like 7% the year earlier -- so it's possible that they only met that revenue number by pulling forward orders from this quarter. So the EMES warning doesn't look good on that score.
"Fundamentals are good " actually, fundamentals stink -- volume is falling, prices are falling, and your largest competitor just pre-announced that conditions in current quarter are getting worse, not better. The distribution was not fully covered last quarter (even at the reduced rate) and it looks increasingly likely now that this quarter will be worse.
Looks like those were your shares that got sold at $8.50... that was quick. Calling it a "stop loss" is kind of funny, when you think about it..
They are a limited partnership, not a regular corporation, which means the GP can sell the LP to anyone, anytime, for any price without a shareholder vote. Because you're not a shareholder -- you own limited partner units. The limits on what they can and cannot do are spelled out in the partnership agreement, which most likely spells out the conditions under which they can sell the company but are probably written loosely in favor of the GP. IMO this makes a buyout much more likely for HCLP -- the mgmt who control the GP can take it private, write all the stock options for themselves they want, then do another IPO in a couple of years.
Fracking will continue and HCLP will continue to sell lots of sand, but the $1,000,000 question is, at what price? Their production cost is only $15/ton and even last qtr they were selling it for what, over $50? I know there's other costs in the chain before the sand hits customers' sites, but still, you don't really know how much margin compression is still possible. I do think they're better positioned than the other sand companies, but if the sand company execs don't know where the industry will bottom out, chances are we don't know either on some Yahoo board.
*that's* what we need... my tax dollars paying for oil drilling when the market already has a giant surplus of millions of barrels of oil that we don't need. Because those bankers and venture capitalists can't afford to lose money, they need tax dollars from me. Maybe the problem is that there was already too much easy credit in the first place??
unfortunately tax-loss season will be ugly for HCLP, EMES, and lots of other energy companies. Sometime in 4Q will be opportunity to begin accumulating shares once again. November's earning announcement will give us a lot of info for potential December buys.
if you look back 30 years, you'll see that every time there is a setback in the economy, CFR comes out of it ahead of where they started because everyone else gets hit worse and they just pick up more business from weaker competitors. In the 1980s they were the only Texas bank that survived that downturn... in last decade they were one of the only big banks that didn't take bailout money, increased dividends every year, and grew at everyone else's expense. Every smart person in Texas is always prepared for the next downturn in oil prices, so when it happens only the dumb ones get taken out.