Entries by Simon Lack

Why Inflation Isn’t What You Think

The Federal Reserve has long wrestled with stubbornly low inflation. A decade ago few would have expected this to be a problem, but Personal Consumer Expenditure (PCE) inflation, the Fed’s preferred measure, is coming in at 1.8% this year. Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) members have been considering allowing inflation to overshoot their target of […]

MLPs Weak in November, As Usual

The Alerian MLP Index now has almost a 24 year history. Investors whose experience pre-dates the 2014 high will fondly recall many strong years. Since 1996 the compounded annual return is 11.3% including distributions, even though the AMZX remains 44% off its August 2014 high. MLPs are a shrinking part of the midstream energy infrastructure […]

Tallgrass Endgame Approaches

Most sell-side analysts are constrained in providing critical analysis of the companies they cover, because their firms are usually trying to do investment banking business with them. In spite of all the regulations intended to create a separation between research and banking, typically less than 10% of analyst ratings are a sell (see Why Wall […]

Leverage Wipes Out Investor’s Bet on Enlink

Managers of client capital invested in midstream energy infrastructure have had to explain recent weak performance to investors frustrated at missing out on the buoyant S&P500. We summarized the many conversations we’ve had last week (see When Will MLPs Recover?). The sector is up this year, although investors in MLP-only products like the Alerian MLP […]

Natural Gas Profits Remain Elusive

Coal is by any measure an environmental and climate disaster. The world relies on coal in various forms for 27% of its primary energy, and it’s responsible for  40% of its CO2 emissions from fuels. Although it possesses lower energy density than oil or natural gas, coal is relatively easy to transport and store which […]

Elections Usually Boost Earnings

It’s a year until the next presidential election. The S&P500 is making new highs, reflecting the persistence of fund flows into equities. Quarterly earnings have been coming in ahead of expectations, but still down 1% year-on-year. Down less than expected counts as up for traders. It’s also worth noting that expectations are for a 10% […]

Tallgrass Responds to Critics, Missing the Point

Earnings season for pipeline companies has provided few surprises, offering little to offset fund outflows, which continue to weigh on performance. Therefore, the Tallgrass (TGE) call last Wednesday promised to be more interesting than most. Blackstone’s (BX) offer to take private the 56% of TGE it doesn’t already own has focused attention on a sideletter […]

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