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Enterprise Products Partners L.P.’s EPD units have marginally declined since it reported third-quarter results on Nov 2. Although petrochemical services businesses and natural gas processing activities improved in the third quarter, crude oil and natural gas liquids (NGL) pipelines witnessed lower income despite an overall rise in energy-related activities. This might have concerned investors.
It reported third-quarter 2021 adjusted earnings per limited partner unit of 52 cents, in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate. The bottom line improved from the year-ago profit of 48 cents.
Total quarterly revenues of $10,831.3 million surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $8,953 million. Also, the top line significantly increased from $6,922 million in the prior-year quarter.
Third-quarter results were primarily supported by higher pipeline volumes. Natural Gas Pipelines and Services, and Petrochemical & Refined Products Services businesses buoyed the partnership’s third-quarter performance.
Enterprise Products Partners L.P. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
Enterprise Products Partners L.P. price-consensus-eps-surprise-chart | Enterprise Products Partners L.P. Quote
Pipeline volumes in NGL, crude oil, refined products & petrochemicals were recorded at 6.3 million barrels per day (bpd), higher than the year-ago quarter’s 6 million bpd. Natural gas pipelines volumes were 14.6 trillion British thermal units per day (TBtus/d), up from 13.1 TBtus/d a year ago. Marine terminal volumes were 1.5 million bpd, in line with the year-ago quarter.
Gross operating income at NGL Pipelines & Services marginally decreased from $1,028.1 million in the year-ago quarter to $1,022.9 million, primarily due to the impacts related to Hurricane Ida.
Natural Gas Pipelines and Services’ gross operating income increased to $223.3 million from $208.4 million in the year-ago quarter. The increase was due to higher natural gas transportation volumes. Improved performance from its Acadian Gas System and Haynesville Gathering System aided the segment.
Crude Oil Pipelines & Services recorded a gross operating income of $422.9 million, which decreased from $481.8 million in the prior-year quarter, owing to a drop in storage and other fee revenues at EHT located on the Houston Ship Channel. Also, decreased average transportation fees from the South Texas Crude Oil Pipeline affected the segment.
Gross operating income at Petrochemical & Refined Products Services amounted to $411.3 million compared with $315 million a year ago, thanks to higher average sales margins at Chambers County Propylene Production facilities. Increased by-product sales from butane isomerization operations and improved sales volumes from the octane enhancement business aided the segment.
Quarterly distribution remained at 45 cents per common unit or $1.80 per unit on an annualized basis.
Adjusted distributable cash flow was $1,613.2 million, slightly down from $1,647 million a year ago, and provided coverage of 1.6X. The partnership retained $624 million of distributable cash flow in the September-end quarter. Free cash flow for the quarter was $1,839 million, significantly up from $430 million a year ago.
For third-quarter 2021, Enterprise Products’ total capital expenditure was $504.9 million.
As of Sep 30, 2021, its outstanding total debt principal was $29.8 billion, up sequentially from $28.8 billion. Enterprise Products’ consolidated liquidity amounted to $6.7 billion, up sequentially from $5.4 billion. The total liquidity amount included unrestricted cash on hand and available borrowing capacity under its revolving credit facility. It had a long-term debt to capitalization of 51.3%.
The partnership still expects growth capital spending of $1.7 billion and $800 million, respectively, for 2021 and 2022. In 2022, the figure might rise to the range of $1-$1.5 billion. It reiterated its sustaining capital spending of $440 million for 2021. It has around $2.9 billion worth of capital projects under construction.
Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider
The partnership currently has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks from the energy space include Continental Resources, Inc. CLR, HollyFrontier Corporation HFC and PHX Minerals Inc. PHX, each holding a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Continental Resources’ bottom line for 2021 is expected to rise to $4.52 per share from a loss of $1.17 a year ago.
HollyFrontier’s bottom line for 2021 is expected to rise 324.1% year over year.
PHX Minerals’ bottom line for the current year is expected to rise 280% year over year.
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