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Williams Partners L.P. (WPZ)

  • Oct. 29, 2014, 3:57 PM
    • Williams Partners (WPZ +1.6%) says it plans to resume ethylene production as soon as next month at its rebuilt and expanded Geismar, La., olefins plant following a series of delays after a 2013 explosion at the site.
    • WPZ says all major construction related to Geismar’s rebuild, expansion and safety-related upgrades has been completed, and the plant is scheduled to begin manufacturing ethylene for sale in November.
    • The 600M lb./year expansion project will bring Geismar’s ethylene production capacity to 1.95B lbs./year from 1.35B lbs/year, with WPZ's share of the total capacity amounting to ~1.7B.
    • WMB +3.1%.
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  • Oct. 14, 2014, 12:33 PM
    • MLPs have been brutalized lately, with the benchmark Alerian MLP Index (AMJ +0.5%) plunging 13% in the past week and down another 3% earlier today, but at least some in the group have been trying to bounce back in the past hour or so.
    • J.P. Morgan strategists are sticking with their bullish central thesis on MLPs, saying prolific production from unconventional energy plays will keep demand high for new energy infrastructure; the firm believes most core acreage in leading shale plays continues to be economic at current commodity prices, which should drive strong long-term growth prospects for MLPs.
    • JPM favors MLPs owning high-quality, diversified assets with strong management teams and proven track records, naming Kinder Morgan (KMI -1.5%), Enterprise Products Partners (EPD +2.5%) and Plains All American Pipeline (PAA -1%).
    • ETP +3.7% and OKS +2.5%, LINE +1.4%, but EROC -5.3%, CQP -4.5%, BBEP -2.5%, MMP -2.5%, TEP -2.1%, PSXP -2%, WPZ -1.1%, ACMP -0.5%.
  • Jun. 16, 2014, 3:45 PM
    • "This is all certainly being driven by the dividend," says BMO analyst Carl Kirst on the Williams Cos. (WMB +18.4%) promises a 32% dividend hike after it buys control of Access Midstream Partners (ACMP +1.7%) for $6B.
    • Because all ACMP's revenue comes from fixed fees, ~80% of cash flow at WMB will be guaranteed after the takeover, Kirst says, with ACMP unitholders getting a higher payout in exchange for slower growth at the combined company.
    • Maxim Group believes WMB will continue to raise its dividend at a ~10% rate for several years beyond 2017, given strong coverage ratios and opportunities due to expected continued increase in shale activity and the need for energy infrastructure development in the U.S. (
    • Also: WPZ +6.5%.
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  • Jun. 16, 2014, 9:59 AM
    • Williams Partners (WPZ +6.4%) opens with strong gains after general partner Williams Cos. (WMB +19.4%) unveils plans to merge its midstream spinoff with and into Access Midstream Partners (ACMP -1.3%) upon completion of a $6B acquisition.
    • WPZ is upgraded to Buy from Hold at Tudor Pickering, which sees 20%-plus upside in the name thanks to the deal and says "long-term coverage problems are solved overnight" with the merger into "coverage-rich" ACMP.
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  • Jun. 16, 2014, 9:15 AM
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  • Apr. 7, 2014, 6:11 PM
    • Gastar Exploration (GST) -2.2% AH on news that its Marcellus Shale production has been interrupted due to a rupture Saturday of a third party-operated gas pipeline.
    • Pipeline operator Williams Partners (WPZ) says it expects to re-route GST's gas production to another pipeline; the two companies expect to operate in this temporary mode an estimated two weeks.
    • GST says it hopes to restart production, which represents some two-thirds of its average daily production, as early as Tuesday night.
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  • Sep. 18, 2013, 2:32 PM
  • Sep. 4, 2013, 10:48 AM
    • Oppenheimer restarts coverage of energy MLPs, bullish on the asset class as a whole; the firm shows a bias in favor of investing in higher distribution growth, even if the yields are lower, and for owning general partners due to their incentive distribution rights structure.
    • Started at Outperform: EQT Midstream (EQM +2.1%), Seadrill Partners (SDLP +0.7%), Tesoro Logistics (TLLP +1.6%), Memorial Production Partners (MEMP +2.4%), Western Gas Partners (WES +0.4%), Western Gas Equity Partners (WGP +0.7%).
    • Started at Market Perform: Williams Partners (WPZ), Crosstex Energy (XTEX), ONEOK Partners (OKS), Genesis Energy (GEL).
    • Also: New Source Energy (NSLP), Breitbrun Energy Partners (BBEP), LRR Energy (LRE), Mid-Con Energy Partners (MCEP).
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  • Aug. 23, 2013, 10:36 AM
    • Williams Partners (WPZ +2%) is upgraded to Buy from Neutral with a $55 price target (from $51) at BofA Merrill Lynch on improving natural gas liquid fundamentals and frack spreads, the removal of WPZ's near-term equity overhang and relative underperformance YTD.
    • While NGL prices remain depressed, improving propane prices have sparked a rebound since June, which the firm says bodes well for WPZ's commodity sensitive businesses (35% of total estimated 2013 EBITDA) given its less aggressive hedge program.
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  • Aug. 2, 2013, 9:10 AM
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  • Aug. 1, 2013, 4:29 PM
    • Williams Partners (WPZ) -4% AH after announcing a public offering of 21.5M common units.
    • WPZ plans to use the proceeds to pay down debt, to fund capital expenditures and for general partnership purposes.
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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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  • Jun. 13, 2013, 10:52 AM
    Williams Cos. (WMB -2.7%) sinks on word of a major explosion and fire at its olefins chemical plant in Geismar, La. Local reports say there are injuries at the facility. The plant produces ~1.3B lbs./year of ethylene and 90M lbs./year of polymer grade propylene. Westlake Chemicals (WLK +3.5%), whose shares are spiking on the news, is seen as a beneficiary of the event.
  • May. 8, 2013, 3:46 PM
    Williams Cos. (WMB -3.5%) is among the weakest stocks in the S&P 500 after reporting a big Q1 profit drop and lowering its 2013 EPS outlook on weaker margins. In today's conference call, CEO Alan Armstrong projected dividends to grow 20%/year through 2015 despite low natural gas liquids prices, and said the needs for North American energy infrastructure would present opportunities for WMB and WPZ.
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Company Description
Williams Partners LP is an energy infrastructure company. Itowns and operates midstream gathering and processing assets, and interstate natural gas pipelines.