Entries by Simon Lack

Where America Gets its Power

One of the challenges facing solar energy in providing electricity is that demand often peaks at the beginning and end of the workday. When people are preparing to head to work or school, electricity demand rises. The second peak occurs during early evening during dinner. Solar output peaks around midday, inconveniently between the twin household […]

Equities Rapidly Price A Pandemic

S&P earnings are estimated to be +8% this year, according to Factset’s most recent publication. The sharp sell-off in stocks last week shows that markets are looking ahead to revised guidance. Covid-19 is a true black swan event that is challenging people to assess its impact. For example, my daughter just canceled a Caribbean cruise […]

Coronavirus Dominates Thoughts on Cheniere

Few sectors are immune from coronavirus fears, and energy is no exception. Although U.S. midstream energy infrastructure is overwhelmingly domestic, growing oil and gas exports have increased business sensitivity to global export demand. Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) prices for Japan and South Korea (the Japan/Korea Market, JKM) have fallen dramatically in recent months. This was […]

Pipeline Earnings Offer Helpful Insights

Earnings season for pipeline companies is drawing to a close, with just a few more names left to report. Results have been mostly as expected with a couple of surprises. Targa Resources (TRGP) handily beat expectations for 4Q19 EBITDA at $465MM versus $362MM. CEO Joe Bob Perkins drew criticism last year for his flippant comment […]

Gulf Tensions Back in Play

Just over three months ago, Saudi Arabian oil facilities were put out of action by a drone and missile strike. Oil prices jumped. It seemed indisputable than Iran was behind the attack – the sophistication was beyond that believed available to the Yemeni Houthi rebels who claimed responsibility. Saudi retaliation appeared inevitable, as half their […]

Should Closed End Funds Use Leverage?

Closed end funds (CEFs) are an obscure sector of the market with a small but fiercely passionate following. Because they have a fixed share count, they can trade at a premium or discount to the value of their holdings, which are usually public equities or debt.  This creates appealing opportunities to buy at a discount […]

When Will MLPs Recover?

Our blog topics are often informed by the subjects that come up in conversations with clients. October was a wrenching month, with the Alerian MLP index slumping to -6% versus +2% for the S&P500. MLPs have lagged equities by an astonishing 22% YTD. Over the last couple of weeks we have been busier than usual […]

Energy Transfer’s Weak Governance Costs Them

Three years ago, Energy Transfer Equity (then ETE, now ET following its 2018 simplification) cleverly extricated itself from a ruinous attempted acquisition of Williams Companies (WMB). Having relentlessly pursued his target, ETE CEO Kelcy Warren came to regret the terms he’d offered as rating agencies criticized the overly leveraged contemplated combined entity. Having failed to […]

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