U.S. Markets closed

Dynagas LNG Partners' stock plunges to pace NYSE losers after dividend slashed 75%

Tomi Kilgore

Shares of Dynagas LNG Partners L.P. plummeted 30% toward a record low in morning trade Monday, enough to pace all NYSE decliners, after the operator of liquid natural-gas carriers slashed its dividend by 75%. The stock is also on track to suffer the biggest one-day selloff since it began trading on Nov. 13, 2013, according to FactSet. The company said late Friday, that it will cut is quarterly distribution to 6.25 cents a share from 25 cents a share. The new dividend will be payable Feb. 14 to shareholders of record on Feb. 7. The distribution cut comes nine months after the company slashed its dividend by 41% to 25 cents from $42.25 cents. The latest cut prompted analyst Liam Burke at B. Riley FBR to downgrade the stock to neutral from buy, and to slash his price target to $2.65 from $10.50. Burke said the dividend cut reflects the company's need to preserve cash, to facilitate the refinancing of its $250 million unsecured notes due on Oct. 30, 2019. The stock has plummeted 76.5% over the past 12 months, while the S&P 500 has slipped 8.2%.