MLP Distribution Recap: 2Q16

08/24/16 | Karyl Patredis

How many MLPs grew, maintained, or cut distributions in Q2 2016?

As I’ve mentioned before, MLP investors love talking about distributions. And while we only update our famous distribution growth slide once a year, I often oblige investors who are wanting to perform a quick litmus test on the MLPs in our indices by sharing how many MLPs grew, maintained, or cut their distributions during a quarter.

So, in the spirit of equipping investors to make informed decisions, I’m sharing the Q2 2016 distribution overview today. To be clear, my purpose is primarily to report the numbers, not to explain why a name grew, cut, or maintained. Our lovely and talented Director of Research does a great job of this in her detailed and informative posts. Now, let’s take a peek at the quarter over quarter data.


First, let me explain that when I say Q2 distributions, I’m meaning distributions that will be paid in Q3 as a result of what happened in Q2. Additionally, I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out that we already know Plains All American Pipeline (PAA) is planning to cut its distribution in Q3. For our yield calculations, this is already being taken into account because the yield is indicative. For this exercise, however, we’re not including it and the cut will be reflected in next quarter’s charts.

AMZ Q/Q Fun Facts

  1. Valero Energy Partners (VLP) was the top grower, increasing its distribution 7.35% from $0.34 to $0.365.
  2. After maintaining its distribution for three quarters, TC Pipelines (TCP) grew its distribution 5.62% between Q1 and Q2 of this year.
  3. AmeriGas Partners (APU) grew distributions 2.17% between Q4 2015 and Q1 2016, but maintained between Q1 and Q2. This is typical behavior for APU as the company regularly raises its distribution once a year in the first quarter.

AMZI Q/Q Fun Facts

  1. Top grower between quarters – Tallgrass Energy Partners (TEP) grew its distribution 7.09% from $0.705 to $0.755.
  2. All names that grew between Q4 2015 and Q1 2016 also grew between Q1 and Q2 2016.

Next, we have the year over year data. For these charts, I looked at Q2 2015 and Q2 2016. If the name was in the index in both Q2 2015 and Q2 2016, I compared the distributions. I realize there is survivorship bias in this method, but as I stated from the beginning this is a quick litmus test, not a “deep dive” research project.


AMZ Y/Y Fun Facts

  1. Top distribution growers were Antero Midstream Partners (AM) and Shell Midstream Partners (SHLX), who both coincidentally grew distributions by 31.58% going from $0.19 to $0.25.
  2. Names that grew year over year:
    1. Antero Midstream Partners (AM)
    2. AmeriGas Partners (APU)
    3. Buckeye Partners (BPL)
    4. Dominion Midstream Partners (DM)
    5. Enable Midstream Partners (ENBL)
    6. EnLink Midstream Partners (ENLK)
    7. Enterprise Products Partners (EPD)
    8. EQT Midstream Partners (EQM)
    9. Energy Transfer Partners (ETP)
    10. Genesis Energy (GEL)
    11. Holly Energy Partners (HEP)
    12. Magellan Midstream Partners (MMP)
    13. MPLX (MPLX)
    14. Plains All American Pipeline (PAA)
    15. Phillips 66 Partners (PSXP)
    16. Spectra Energy Partners (SEP)
    17. Shell Midstream Partners (SHLX)
    18. Summit Midstream Partners (SMLP)
    19. Sunoco (SUN)
    20. Sunoco Logistics Partners (SXL)
    21. TC Pipelines (TCP)
    22. Tallgrass Energy Partners (TEP)
    23. Tesoro Logistics (TLLP)
    24. Valero Energy Partners (VLP)
    25. Western Gas Partners (WES)
  3. Names that maintained year over year:
    1. DCP Midstream Partners (DPM)
    2. Enbridge Energy Partners (EEP)
    3. Ferrellgas Partners (FGP)
    4. Golar LNG Partners (GMLP)
    5. Martin Midstream Partners (MMLP)
    6. NuStar Energy (NS)
    7. ONEOK Partners (OKS)
    8. Suburban Propane Partners (SPH)
    9. Williams Partners (WPZ)

AMZI Y/Y Fun Facts

  1. Top distribution growers were also AM and SHLX.
  2. Names that grew year over year:
    1. BPL
    2. ENLK
    3. EPD
    4. EQM
    5. ETP
    6. GEL
    7. MMP
    8. PAA
    9. SEP
    10. SHLX
    11. SXL
    12. TCP
    13. TLLP
    14. WES
  3. Names that maintained year over year:
    1. DPM
    2. EEP
    3. NS
    4. OKS
    5. WPZ

As energy continues to recover, we hope to report an ever decreasing list of cuts. Based on the charts, it’s clear that more MLPs are choosing to maintain their distributions. That said, on a full year basis, our famous distribution growth slide will still show y/y distribution growth, but likely less growth versus previous years.

2016.08.26 4:30pm CST – Updated data to reflect SXL distribution increase between Q1 2016 and Q2 2016. Removed comparison of CMLP to CEQP. Reorganized year over year lists.