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Williams Companies Inc (WMB)

  • Feb. 14, 2014, 3:29 PM
    • The two activist hedge funds looking to spark change at Williams Cos. (WMB, WPZ) disclose that they have raised their collective stake in the gas pipeline operator to just under 10%, up from an initial 5.3%, and have hired an investment banker.
    • Since going public with their stake in December, the hedge funds - Corvex Management and Soroban Capital - have said they want WMB to consider pursuing more mergers, and suggested they are seeking seats on the board.
    • Nearly all of the hedge funds' holdings - ~$2.5B, 8.8% of the company - are in actual shares, so the firms can say they have much more money at stake than if their position was composed largely of derivatives.
  • Feb. 14, 2014, 11:52 AM
    • An underground transmission pipeline carrying natural gas exploded yesterday in southern Kentucky, sending two people to the hospital and destroying nearby homes.
    • The explosion has renewed fears of some residents who oppose the proposed Bluegrass Pipeline project, which would stretch ~180 miles through the state and carry flammable natural gas liquids to a connector that leads to the Gulf of Mexico.
    • Officials at Williams Co. (WMB), one of the companies behind the project, say the pipeline would be safe.
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  • Dec. 17, 2013, 3:47 PM
    • Williams Cos. (WMB +4.1%) is among the day's best performers in the S&P 500 after Corvex Management and Soroban Capital revealed they own a combined 5.3% of WMB shares and have been in discussions with the company, including asking for board seats and opportunities for deals in the midstream segment.
    • Corvex, run by Keith Meister, typically works behind the scenes though it has engaged in some public fights, including an ongoing rumble with Commonwealth REIT; Soroban, run by Eric Mandelblatt, is heavily invested in energy stocks but it hasn’t filed a 13D in the few years it has been operating.
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  • Dec. 16, 2013, 5:44 PM
    • Williams Cos. (WMB+3% AH as Corvex Management discloses a 5.28% stake and seeks to add two members to WMB's board of directors.
    • Corvex says it has held talks with WMB to enhance the structure and value of the company's investments and assets and to optimizing capital structure and dividend policy; it requests WMB to add Corvex head Keith Meister and Soroban Capital's Eric Mandelblatt to WMB's board.
  • Oct. 30, 2013, 5:59 PM
    • Williams Cos. (WMB) Q3 earnings fell 7.1% and affiliate Williams Partners' (WPZ) Q3 earnings slipped 3.8% on lower olefin margins resulting from lost production at its Geismar olefins plant.
    • Fee-based revenue rose 9.3% to $720M; the company estimated that downtime at the olefins plans lowered results by ~$79M.
    • WMB had previously agreed to waive up to $200M of incentive distribution rights due to it from WPZ to boost the partnership's cash coverage for 2013, thus WPZ's Q3 cash distributions to WMB are being reduced by $90M of waived incentive distribution rights and the balance of $110M remains available.
    • WMB +0.6% AH.
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  • Oct. 30, 2013, 4:51 PM
    • Williams Cos. (WMB): Q3 EPS of $0.19 beats by $0.04.
    • Says it continues to expect to increase the full-year dividend it pays shareholders by 20% each year through 2015.
    • Shares +0.9% AH. (PR)
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  • Oct. 17, 2013, 3:09 PM
    • First screening for stocks with a dividend yield of at least 3%, payout ratios of less than 75%, low debt, and compounded annual income growth of 5%, the team narrows it further by selecting those least correlated (in a negative way) to higher Treasury yields and with little near-term debt maturing.
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  • Oct. 16, 2013, 10:25 AM
    • The Bluegrass natural gas pipeline in Kentucky reportedly has secured land-use deals in parts of nine of 13 counties along its proposed path; Williams Cos. (WMB +0.7%) is one of the energy firms behind the project.
    • The path would bypass property owned by a Roman Catholic abbey in central Kentucky after the monks who live there refused to allow surveyors on their land.
    • Environmental groups and local residents oppose the project, which would build a 24-inch thick underground pipeline to carry natural gas liquids from Ohio and Pennsylvania to an existing connection in Kentucky that runs to the Gulf of Mexico.
  • Oct. 1, 2013, 4:54 PM
    • Williams Cos (WMB) and Boardwalk Pipeline Partners (BWP) say they've signed joint venture agreements to develop a proposed liquefied petroleum gas export terminal near Lake Charles, La.
    • The terminal would be designed to store 900K barrels of fully refrigerated propane and butane with a load-rate of 25K bbl/hour.
    • WMB and BWP say they are working with a number of parties to reserve off-take capacity at the terminal.
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  • Sep. 19, 2013, 7:55 AM
    • Questions around Kinder Morgan's (KMI) maintenance capex practices and the capex treatment of acquired assets have not been fully resolved after yesterday's conference call with CEO Richard Kinder, Jefferies says.
    • As a result, the firm does not expect the Kinder family of companies to outperform peers; it maintains its Hold rating and $38 price target on KMI, preferring Williams Cos. (WMB) and Targa Resources (TRGP).
    • In the premarket, KMI +0.4%, KMP +0.1%, KMR -0.6%, EPB flat.
  • Sep. 18, 2013, 2:32 PM
  • Aug. 15, 2013, 9:40 AM
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  • Jul. 31, 2013, 4:26 PM
    • Williams Cos (WMB): Q2 EPS of $0.19 beats by $0.04. (PR)
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  • Jun. 26, 2013, 12:59 PM
    Williams Cos. (WMB +3.1%) shares rise after the owner of the Louisiana chemical plant in last week's fatal explosion says insurance will cover most of the loss. WMB says it has $500M in property damage and business interruption insurance and $610M in liability insurance. The plant would need to be closed until the middle of next year to exceed coverage limits, Tudor Pickering says in upgrading WMB to Hold. WPZ +3%.
  • Jun. 24, 2013, 12:15 PM
    Williams Partners (WPZ -3.7%; WMB -2.6%) says it has begun assessing damage caused by the explosion and fire that occurred at its Geismar, La., olefins plant earlier this month, although the gas pipeline owner says neither the full extent of the damage nor the time needed to make repairs is known. The plant remains shut down and the expansion work is temporarily suspended.
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  • Jun. 18, 2013, 8:58 AM
    Goldman Sachs removes Williams Cos. (WMB) from its Conviction Buy List and lowers its price target to $40 from $45, and cuts Williams Partners (WPZ) to Neutral from Buy with a $52 price target, down from $58. Goldman believes last week's explosion at the Geismar chemical plant adds material risk to near-term growth of both WMB and WPZ, putting dividend growth targets at risk. WMB -1.9% premarket.
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Company Description
Williams Companies Inc is an energy infrastructure company focused on connecting North America's hydrocarbon resource plays to growing markets for natural gas, NGLs, and olefins.