Editor’s Note: The initial article stated Phillips 66 signed a five-year contract with Union Pacific to deliver crude from the Bakken. That was incorrect; the contract was with Global Partners. This article has been amended.
A couple of high-profile project cancellations have raised questions over the attractiveness of crude oil and liquid petroleum pipeline companies such as Enbridge Energy Partners, L.P. (NYSE:EEP) and Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP (NYSE:KMP) , while making a strong case for rail haulage companies like Union Pacific Corporation (NYSE:UNP). Here is a closer look at all three.
Kinder Morgan announcement
Earlier this month, after major West Coast refiners said they were not interested in taking oil from Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP (NYSE:KMP)’s proposed Freedom pipeline, Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP (NYSE:KMP) announced that it would not move forward with the project, which would ship oil from the Permian Basin shale play in Texas to refineries in Southern California. This comes as a major blow to the $2 billion project announced last October. The company is now forced to explore the higher-cost rail transport method. Understandably the announcement had a negative impact, though not very high, knocking off a couple of percentage points.
Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP (NYSE:KMP) is a large company, and its stock is not driven by an announcement of a project getting slightly derailed, but this small speed bump does allow for good entry points in this high-growth stocks. Kinder Morgan has corrected from its 52 week high of $91.6 in April to $85 but has a target of $102 from Deutsche Bank. Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP (NYSE:KMP)’s forward price earnings ratio of 29.6 is slightly on higher side but offers strong future prospects with an excellent dividend yield of 6%.
Similarly, Enbridge Energy Partners, L.P. (NYSE:EEP) faced a major setback for its $2.5 billion sandpiper pipeline project when the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) rejected the company’s application for approval of a toll agreement. The 600 km pipeline would have linked the prolific Bakken Shale in North Dakota to a refining capacity in the U.S. Midwestern state of Minnesota. The FERC decision does not reject the project, but it has effectively pushed back the pipeline’s start-up target of early 2016, as Enbridge Energy Partners, L.P. (NYSE:EEP) will now have to look into alternative ways of financing the project. Like Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP (NYSE:KMP), Enbridge Energy Partners, L.P. (NYSE:EEP) is a big company with a market capitalization of $9.3 billion and remains unfazed by these small setbacks but the development has certainly taken some sheen off this stock, which has gained less than 5 % over the last quarter, thus underperforming the markets. The loss in stock price is compensated by the boost in dividend yield. At $29.60, it offers a yield of 7.3% while its fundamentals are still strong. A forward price-earnings ratio of 23.3 and a debt gearing of 1.37 indicate that the stock is in line with market valuations.