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Thursday, July 31, 2008

MLPS are off the lows and there is a firmness in the index which is down about 50 ticks. Considering oil down and broad energy stocks following Exxon and the rest of the market, i think we are actually acting fairly well today. No big winners but some fractional gains today in Atlas Pipeline Partners (APL) DCP Midstream (DPM), Magellan (MMP) and Martin Midstream (MMLP) among others.

Losers today some the coal MLPS which are down fractions to a point. Holly Partners (HEP) is down 2 and change on no news. Thinking this one should cut its losses by the close so i took a small flyer for a trade this morning at 31.30. Crude is down nearly 3 bucks with nat gas and everything else following.

Since Cramer has called the bottom i will join the cry of pompousness and cautiously call the bottom in MLPS. 262 is the floor.


Take a day trip to Saratoga and spend the day at the racetrack and MLPS jump 6 points on the MLPS index. Lost money at the track. Made money mlps. It works for me. All of this on the back of the oil price rebound which for now looks like a 1 day wonder (the oil price rebound). The chart above continues to display a bottoming process but the first headwinds sit right above these levels as the moving averages will provide resistence to some degree. Would love to see MLPS cut above them but its going to take some work.
Distribution news this morning from Eagle Rock Energy Partners (EROC) which boosts. The company also put out a release about its exposure to Semagroup. 6 million is their exposure but it sounds like they are getting paid. Earnings out after the close from Atlas Pipeline (APL) and TC Pipelines (TCLP).
Nothing on the upgrade downgrade list so far. Crude is down a buck this morning after yesterday's gain. Stock futures are a little higher as GDP numbers loom. Exxon Mobil earnings will probably drive energy stocks today so we'll watch for that.
We're up 2 out of the last 3 days and yesterday's move looked impressive.Still waiting for 2 up days in a row. Maybe today.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Heading for Saratoga today with all my brothers in law. I have a lot of them. Will post later.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

You can't buy 2 up days in a row. MLPS are down today by 2 points on the index as today oil and big energy leads lower. Kinder Morgan (KMP) Oneok (OKS) and Teppco (TPP) all losing major fractions and impacting the index.

A few winners however with Alliance Resource (ARLP) and Penn Virginia Holdings (PVG) up 1 and change. Atlas Pipeline Partners (APL) is up nearly 1 point as well. Lots of fractional winners today. In fact as a whole more mlps are up today than down. So its not as bad as it looks.

And they do begin today as a few mlps make the distribution official for the holders of record and more to come over the next few days. We also have earnings this morning from Holly Partners (HEP) whose stock price has been decimated in the last few weeks trading under 29 at one point. Also Teppco posts its numbers this morning. Enbridge Energy Partners (EEP) put up excellent earnings and boosted the distribution and guidance yesterday. All very good reasons for an mlp to trade close to its 52 week low and a 9% yield!

Constellation Energy Partners (CEP) has gone from near 50 to 15 in the last many months. So this morning at 1:38am Lehman Brothers cuts Constellation from outperform to market perform. You have to love this. You think maybe the janitor found the list overnight and under the cover of darkness sends out a press release hoping no one would notice? The stock at 19 is sitting 31 points below its 52 week high and now they cut it to marketperform? Dear Lehman, they try so hard.

Waiting for Valero earnings (VLO) this morning as what they say could have impact on mlps that have been victimized by the spike in oil last quarter. Calumet Specialty Products (CLMT) for one has been heavily impacted by the squeeze in margins. Nustar (NS) and the like probably another victim. If they have favorable things to say about the outlook it could move those mlps. I took a flyer on Calumet yesterday for a short term trade.

Crude flat to a little higher this morning as it continues to not do very much lately on the upside and seems to want to correct further. 125 is holding for now. Nat gas flat as well. Stock futures have turned higher after yesterday's debacle. Not sure what to look for today after that nice outperformance surprise by mlps. Lets see if we can make it 2 days in a row.

BTW Holly Partners (HEP) forecast distributable cash flow to increase in the futures. We'll see what the market does with this.

Monday, July 28, 2008

One of your odd days. If you said to me this morning the dow would be down 240, energy stocks would be down as a group, and mlps would be up nicely...i would have given you directions to the nearest clinic. Did everyone wake up this morning and saw 10% plus yields as we go ex-distribution in the next few days? Actually i was happy to see mlps hold their gains in the last hour while the rest of the tape sagged into the close.

Now if the Art Cashin scenario plays and we see a capitulation bottom and reversal tomorrow, is it concieveable that MLPS will be among the market leaders? Need to see a close above 271 tomorrow to make that a reality. For now watching but keep a close watch if this is the beginnings of something more important.
The dow is down 200 points. Everything is down including big energy stocks which were firm but have now rolled over. MLPS however are at the highs of the day now with the index up 1.28% @ 267.82 as we continue to slowly distance ourselves from the bottoms of the last 2 weeks. Of course we had an 8 point up day last Monday only to see most of it evaporate by the end of the week. Still it is strange to see a divergence like this. Watching the situation carefully.
Art Cashin on CNBC who has been around for many bottoms played out a scenario last week where we would be down hard Thursday (-283) followed by a mediocre Friday (+21)..then down hard today and a capitulation reversal tomorrow. So far its playing according to plan.

Meanwhile the mlp index is up 3 points on the day. Go figure. Somebody ring a bell?

Or maybe this Reuters story over the weekend is a sign of a bottom in mlps. Its not often you see a story where they tell you to stay away!
Well we have a divergence going on with a nearly 3 point gain in the mlp index while everything else is down. Big energy is flat. But up is up and you can't be sad about that. Coal MLPS lead the way with both Alliances (ARLP,AHGP) up 1 and change on earnings and the distribution hike. Boardwalk (BWP) is up nearly 1. Most other MLPS showing nice fractional gains on the board.

Lets see if we can hold 'em this afternoon.

Another week starts and things look very bleak when you look at the chart. We had a one day bounce last week and then spent the rest of the time selling off. That 262 low looks very tenuous however if energy stocks rally today we could at least hold it in here.

The broader oil and gas index is falling along with energy prices and it looks like support lies not too far below current levels. MLPS continue to get wagged by the dog of the day. When financials go down we go down..when energy goes down we go down. Some day we will seperate from all of this. I'm not sure today is the day. But some day.

Then of course the dow chart is a horror but the question is are we going to rally in here ala March to May or do we have more downside ahead of us. I think the low 2 weeks ago look and felt like a selling climax but one can never be sure.

Boardwalk Partners puts up earnings this morning which look pretty good but probably won't matter. One of the better performers in mlp land Alliance Resource Partners (ARLP) also puts up good earnings and a 12% distribution boost. Coal mlps remain closer to their 52 week highs but they also have come off. And Alliance Holdings (AHGP) of course benefits from Alliance Resource and they boost their distribution as well.

Nothing on the upgrade downgrade list. Crude is 1.50 higher this morning but that has become less meaningful as we are now in the land of bigger numbers. Nat gas is up 11 cents as it rebounds from what has been freefall lately. Stock futures are a touch softer this morning.

So we wait for the open. I am college shopping this morning but they have wireless so i will check in later this morning.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Seeking Alpha piece gives a big boost to Calumet Specialty Products. Its a long read but it gets there eventually.

Hope everyones weekend has been a good one.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

A Bugs Bunny classic. Check out grandma!


Friday, July 25, 2008

The demoralization process just continues in here as energy stocks sell off into the close. The mlp index is down nearly 1 point and at the lows of the day. There are some nice moves from some deeply oversold mlps heading into the close but the damage is so extensive that it really isn't very meaningful.
MLP index just went negative!

Weakening oil and natural gas prices keeping a lid on anything energy today except for coal mlps which are up nicely as coal is rallying today for some reason. The mlp index has been in a water torture decline from the days highs and is now just barely higher. Look at EV Partners (EVEP) which made a big distribution boost to 2.80 annual. The stock is now down on the day! Holly Partners (HEP) whose price pretty well discounted the end of oil and gas as we know it is actually up 1.50 and back to 32 but it has been decimated. They boosted their distribution this morning. Hiland (HLND) and Hiland Holdings (HPGP) are hiking payouts. The stocks are down of course.

So its really more of the same. Bear market. State of hopelessness. I would like to see some sort of basing action but there is just too much nervousness in here. Some of you have posted about naked shorting and the problems that brings. If Mr Cox at the SEC makes naked shorting illegal for all stocks...we'll know fairly quickly if mlps are victims of naked shorting.
The mlp index is up 2 points which we don't believe anyway. Holly Partners (HEP) EV Partners (EVEP) and Nustar (NS) are leading the way higher. We have earnings from Nustar and Nustar Holdings (NSH). Distributions were announced as well. Lots of fractional plusses on the board as well.

Crude is selling off again after being up earlier and is down 1.60 right now. The overall market is rebounding off the mess from yesterday but we'll see if it holds.

Another Friday has arrived and thankfully brings an end to another week of torture. Regency (RGNC) Boardwalk (BWP) and DCP Midstream (DPM) all raised their distributions and E V Partners raised 8 cents to 70 cents which had already been pre-announced a few months back but it doesn't matter anyway.
Energy stocks getting some support this morning from firmer crude and stock futures are stronger now as durable goods was supportive and of course we are coming off that debacle yesterday. No other corporate news and no upgrades or downgrades.
Back to the torture chamber.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A little music for your evening.


All stocks including energy, which firmed up midday, are selling off. MLPS at the lows of the day with the index down nearly 3 points.
If i hadn't taken a sizeable position in the Double Short Oil and Gas (DUG) i would be in a real sink hole right now. As it is i'm dangling at the edge of the cliff holding on to a branch whose roots are beginning to pull away from the earth. Dow down 206. MLP index down 1 and change. My hair hurts and my teeth itch!
Nat gas now with an 8 handle. Gasoline almost with a 2 handle. And crude oil is now down again. MLP index down 1 point and the sell off continues.
After a nearly 2 point pop at the open the MLP index is now down a fraction. Nat gas down 44 cents to 9.38 after inventory numbers. So another excuse to sell 'em!

More reasons to drive prices lower. Targa Resources (NGLS) boosts its distribution by 23%. Sorry for missing this yesterday but sometimes stuff falls through the cracks.
More news to drive MLPS lower this morning. Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) and Energy Transfer Equity (ETE) are lifting distributions again.

Can you tell i woke up this morning in a fabulous mood?

Not that it matters these days...because it doesn't but Crosstex Energy LP (XTEX) and Crosstex Energy (XTXI) boost their payouts for the quarter. And we have earnings this morning from Enterprise Products Partners (EPD) and we also have numbers from Duncan Partners (DEP) and of course they look fine. And Wachovia saw something in Sunoco Logistics (SXL) earnings yesterday and they upgrade the stock to outperform from marketperform.

Add Teppco (TPP) to the growing list of companies saying they will not be impacted from the Semagroup mess. The Wall Street Journal (pay site) this morning says it was being short crude oil that may have caused the spike to 147. Semagroup had to cover those short positions which caused the huge trading loss and the push to chapter 11. Far be it for me to criticize since i went long the refiners as a dropping oil play which has not turned out well. Semagroup is the parent company of Semagroup Energy Partners (SGLP) which trades publically and has not filed for chapter 11. 90% of SGLP's business comes from the parent.

Crude oil has been straddling either side of the flat line this morning. Gasoline is actually close to having a 2 handle again. Nat gas continues to implode this morning down another 11 cents. Stock futures a little softer but not by much as the repair rally continues. We of course in MLP land continue to wallow in the snake pit in a state of perpetual hopelessness. A reflex rally is due in energy stocks and we seem to be following them down so if they bounce...we should too but probably won't.

News from Inergy LP which boosts its distirbution and also from Inergy GP which is lifting their payout.

So sit back, relax, seatbacks and tray tables in their upright and locked positions.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Some after the close news. Semagroup LP (the parent company which is private) continues to impact mlps. Hiland Partners (HLND) puts out this statement about the bankruptcy impact. It says it will have no impact on distribution guidance. Plains All Amercian (PAA) put out another release after the close saying no material impact on its operations.

Something positive perhaps for Constellation Energy Partners (CEP) which has settled the "Torch Dispute" recieveing a favorable ruling. This lifts the uncertainty that has been overhanging this stock for months. No distribution increase this quarter but perhaps the settlement opens the door down the road. Stock is bid above the close in after hours but no trades. 18.30 x 18.97.
Closing at the lows of the day. The agony just never stops.
BTW its getting very ugly among big energy stocks. The Double Short Oil and gas is up over 2 dollars as the DJ Oil and Gas Index is down 23 points or 3.6%. These big indexes are down 20% or more from their highs. Seemed impossible a month ago.
When shell corporations with negative net worth (in polite circles known as banks) can rally and you can't...there is a problem. With energy stocks as a whole down nearly 3% its hard to fight that headwind. MLPs are down with the index off 1 and change. Kinder Morgan (KMP) the heavyweight is the big drag down 1 and change. Copano (CPNO) also a 1 point loser. Not much has changed really from earlier. Holly Partners (HEP), Exterran Partners (EXLP) and Sunoco Logistics (SXL) are the 1 point plus winners as we crawl toward the last hour.

Crude oil closing down another 3 dollars and change. Nat gas has sold off as well.

Energy stocks are rallying in here. I guess they got all sold out for now. MLP index down l point now.
Energy stocks getting hammered now with the dj oil and gas index down nearly 4%. The XOI is down nearly 3%. The gas index is down nearly 4%. MLPS are down 1%. Relative outperformance. Its practically the same thing as being up!

Kinder Morgan (KMP) is being shot for some reason this morning down 1.30 and that has taken MLPS down on the index by 2.40. Coal and resource mlps continue to take hits like Atlas Energy Resource (ATN) Alliance Resouce Partners (ARLP) Dorchester Minerals LP (DMLP) all showing 1 point plus losses in the early going.

Sunoco Logistics traded up 3 points early but has pulled back..still up just shy of 2 points on good earnings. No big winners yet.

Off our lows now..suddenly less than 2 points. The oil numbers are out and they are bearish apparently for oil. Crude draw but a build in gas and distillite supplies.

Crude oil gets almost all the attention and the uptrend line is broken so we have been seeing a correction in prices. Crude is down another 2 dollars this morning ahead of the weekly inventory numbers at 10:30am

But while that is going on take a look at the natural gas chart as proxied by the UNG which has gone into freefall here. We have gone from a 13 handle to a 9 handle in a hurry and i think this correction continues. Its funny how markets can go from that sense of it never going down ever again..and once it gets to that point the uptrend usually ends.

Of course the opposite is true in MLP land where they never go up anymore and never will again except for the occasional one day rally. I put up this chart of the MLP index vs the DJ Oil and Gas Index vs the S&P. Its just a short 5 day chart but i just want to point out that after being killed in performance vs big energy...the lines crossed 5 days ago. So congratulations. We are going down less than big energy!

Bottoms are processes and not necessarily events so i'm giving it another day to follow up Monday's nearly 8 point gain. 277 on the chart is the first headwind.

Sunoco Logistics (SXL) reported earnings after the close yesterday and it was record earnings, record results, distribution you know the stock will be down today! Some news items from Semagroup (SGLP) whose bankrupt parent says it plans to sell off some of its subsidiaries and get its business back in order. They apparently lost money in the energy markets. Wachovia upgrades the stock to market perform from underperform. Nothing else on the corporate news front this morning.

As we said before crude is down around 126 this morning...nat gas is down and with a 9 handle and gasoline is just above 3 dollars. Could a 2 handle on gasoline be with us in short order? Hope so.

Headlines as they break.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I can't say i'm not disappointed that we finished a little lower on the MLP index today. I would have preferred an up finish but big energy dictated the pace as those stocks sold down 2 to 4% in oil and gas land. So i suppose being off just a small fraction is a tiny victory.

I'll give it another day. Atlas Pipeline Partners (APL) Atlas Energy Resources (ATN) and Martin Midstream (MMLP) among the distribution boosts today. Atlas Holdings (AHD) boosted big time.
Took a little time to turn the MLP ship but after being down nearly 2 points on the index we have now turned fractionally higher! Dorchester Minerals (DMLP) and Natural Resource Partners (NRP) are the 2 biggest lowers down between 1 and 2 points apiece. Magellen (MMP) Holly Partners (HEP) Buckeye (BPL) and a few others showing small fractional gains but the momentum appears to be getting behind us.
Oil and natural gas are selling off this morning Crude down nearly 2 dollars now as it gives back all of yesterday's gains and natgas is down 4%. I guess the hurricane play isn't going to work; especially when the hurricane is going to be minimal and is heading not toward the guld of mexico producing areas but where there are some refineries and they may be far north of any peak wind and rain. Weather plays in the oil and gas market often times become buy the rumor sell the fact trades and this one seems to be playing out according to form so far.

Nat gas has really taken a nosedive from 13 dollars to now with a 10 handle. Sometimes when markets are irrational they do things that seem to defy all logic. And i am talking about the rally phase here. Nat gas stocks are making money hand over fist but there comes a point where their discoveries of supply are going to effect price. This part of the equation did not play out as many of these issues went to new highs but we must be at the point now where some logic is returning.

Now lets apply that the MLP's. They went down with the collapse of financials which i suppose is logical to some degree. You have to borrow to build and money is tighter so that might lead to more financing with stock which has been done by some issues at progressively lower prices given the downtrend. Then we had pressure from forever rising prices as it impacted hedges among other things so we suffered the indignity of watch energy stocks go up big time except for our.s. 2 headwinds. Now we have a slowing economy and demand destruction going on. Maybe...just maybe..mlps have been pricing in demand destruction all along as these forces aligned themselves.

On the other hand at least so far companies continue to do what they do every quarter...raise distributions which is the ultimate metric here when figuring out who are the outperformers. So the question is given what we have to deal with...will falling energy prices offset the other 2 negatives. Or perhaps if the financial system can at least stabilize and the economy doesn't go into freefall..will mlps be the first group to turn?

It would be encouraging if we could engineer followthrough today given all the market headwinds. Refiners are bid higher so something is going up in the pre market.

DJ headline as Semagroup LP (the parent) files for chapter 11. The child (SGLP) is down 99 cents in pre market trading. No story link available yet.

The bounce was so overdue that the worry was it would never happen; and that is usually at the point which makes it imminent. So we had a nearly 8 point gain on the mlp index and lots of mlps moved 1 to 2 points higher. Okay today is a new day and one day means nothing without follow through so we will be looking to see if we can make it 2 days in a row. The first challenege here will be to get through last week's high at 275.

And if we get through 275 the 34 day moving average resistence sits at 278. So we have lots of headwinds to fight and the markets are starting things off on a sour note with earnings related weakness sending dow futures down about 100 points.

Oil meanwhile is keying off Tropical Storm Dolly which is heading for the US Mexico border for landfall tomorrow morning as a category 1 hurricane..maybe a 2 at most. The USO chart continues to look pretty toppy to me. We had the initial break under the trendline last week and there could be a opportunity setting up here. If crude rallies it could take the USO back to 110 or so.

Since we now have a way to play this with the Ultrashares doubleshort Crude (DTO) i will be watching closely. If the USO can push back to 110 i will be building a small position in the DTO. I still am long the DUG but i have sold August 32 calls against my position there as a hedge. The premimum was so attractive it was hard to resist and since i have an average price there of 29 i decided to protect that to some degree.

The dow chart is a mess but at least we are not in freefall. Bottoms being processes and not necessarily events, today's action continues to be part of that process and frankly i always like down opens like this as they have that chance to rally 'em back by days end.

And one last chart this morning. If crude is destined to fall over the next several months Calumet Specialty Products (CLMT) stands to benefit. Notice that hideous decline but the company has done all the right things to stop the bleeding. The distribution has already been declared for the quarter and it was not cut like last time. Looks like this one is trying to build a base.

Some Semagroup Energy Partners (SGLP) news as 2 creditors put in a new board and say they remain supportive of existing management. Plus lawsuits abound as the vultures circle. A shock there! No other headlines this morning so far and nothing yet on the upgrade downgrade list.

A few of you guys have thrown in some coin into the tip jar for me and i thank you very much! I am toying with the idea of setting up a subscription site to go along with the blog and i am trying to work out the details on how to go foward and what sort of focus it will have. I have mixed feelings about going to some sort of pay site because i love to blog and talk about markets ...but we love to eat around here as well! I know we're all adults but i would hate to put up a trade idea that winds up backfiring. So stay tuned for details as i figure this out. In the meantime...headlines as they break.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Looks like we're going out with a fabulous 8 point gain. Shows you how mispriced mlps are with this snapback rally but it needs to be more than a one day wonder. Atlas Pipeline (APL) among the bigger winners up 2.65 and back over 38. Coal mlps like Natural Resource (NRP) and Alliance Resource (ARLP) are up nearly 2 points as well.
Mr Pipes correctly points out that 1 day rallies do not a bottom make but it is a start. A 7 point gain as we move through the last hour. Lets see if we can close near the high...and then of course it would be nice to make it 2 days in a row.
A fabulous 6 point plus gain on the MLP index as if they couldn't bounce 'em was over. 1 point plus gains in Atlas Pipeline Partners (APL), Magellan Midstream (MMP), Kinder Morgan Partners (KMP) Nustar (NS) Oneok (OKS) DCP Midstream (DPM) Plains All American (PAA) among others. Fractional gains in Global Partners (GLP) Legacy (LGCY) Hiland Holdings (HPGP) Williams (WPZ) Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) and others.

Not many losers today at all. Martin Midstream (MMLP) is down a few pennies along with Exterran Partners (EXLP) and Inergy Holdings (NRGP).

Relief today that we held 262. Maybe we finally put some sort of bottom.

Dead cats of the world must have unionized or something because we have been doing nothing but going down for the last 9 weeks. The daily chart looks dismal at best and hopeless at worst but at least one or 2 buyers provided a handful of upticks in the last 30 minutes on Friday and we are just off that 262 level which is holding by a thread.

The weekly MLP chart offers us the prospect of a double bottom in here and we are deeply oversold . If we don't bounce here..we may as well pack it in.

Crude oil is up this morning as Tropical Storm Dolly is moving off the Yucatan Peninsula and heading for Brownsville by later tomorrow. Now while crude is rallying on this be advised that even as a hurricane this will be short lived. So i think it maybe another opportunity here to go short oil...which one can do btw with the Ultra Short Crude Oil (DTO) which is a double short on the commodity as opposed to DUG which is a double short on the oil and gas stocks. The brave among you might give this a look. The USO chart looks to me like it wants to go down here. Note the on balance volume on the USO has broken down so this could be a signal for lower prices ahead.

This is an early first post so i don't have any corporate headlines to play with and the upgrades downgrades are trickling in so if anything crosses i shall post this morning. Stock futures have strengthened this morning as it is still all about financials. MLPS late last week seemed to be keying off the Semagroup LP (SGLP) debacle as traders tried to tie it to other mlps like Plains All American (PAA) which had to put out a statement to stop a 3 point bleeding on Thursday evening. At least they were responsible to their shareholders by providing them with information. Atlas Pipeline was down 2 points Friday on no news and the company came out and affirmed guidance. I am still waiting for confirmation that Semagroup LP (SGLP) investor relations even opened my email let alone read it. It was an email requesting information on the stock collapse on Thursday. Hey guys if you want to answer my rush. Anytime before the stock price goes to zero.

Headlines as they break.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Things are tough in the tv business these i am seeking additional employment as work has dried up a bit. Anyone have any prospects please let me know. I can forecast weather pretty well. I can write. I know business and stocks and i think i know a little about oil and gas and mlps. I'm in the NYC area.

I also set up a tip jar if you should feel so inclined but please don't feel obligated. Its just there if you feel like buying me a beer or something!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Up .33 on the index. Ridiculous.

Have a good weekend. I don't even want to think about this stuff until Monday.
I think we are seeing bear raids going on in some of these MLPS today. Atlas Pipeline Partners (APL) was down nearly 2 when the company came out and affirmed guidance. Also seeing big drops in Exterran Partners (EXLP) down nearly 2 dollars on no news. Hiland Holdings (HPGP) is down 3 and change on no news. Yesterday's horror show Semagroup Partners (SGLP) is down 3 and change and trading in the mid 7's.

God its ugly. The mlp index is down a fraction but it is masking some real horrors.

One year ago today folks the MLP index hit its all time high and ended a rally that began in October of 2006 when the index broke out above 270 and ran up some 30% from there. And with yesterday's 262.01 close we have given it all back except of course for all distributions since. We are down 23.5% since the top but at least we have 7 to 9% distribution yield to cushion that. And of course we're talking an average here so most are down more; some are down less like Kinder Morgan Holders for example (KMP) whose stock price in the last year hasn't changed too much. Of course it all depends on where you bought.

Of course yesterday's big news was Semagroup Energy Partners (SGLP) who stood by while the stock went into freefall on huge volume. Then at 8:10pm after all trading ceased came the announcement that their parent company which is private was having liquidity issues and could file for chapter 11.

Now that is a fabulous chart isn't it. Much of the company's business comes from the parent company as stated in the latest 10Q filing. You think there is an issue here? Citigroup downgrades to hold from buy this morning. A little late kids!

Leftover news from yesterday as Magellan(MMP) boosts for the umpteenth time in a row. Magellan Holdings (MGG) does the same.

Okay boys and girls this is it here. We have to bounce. Since energy stocks have been in freefall all week they should bounce soon and maybe today is the day. Crude oil is up this morning by less than 2 bucks but its down 15. For you Double short players there is DTO which is double short crude oil as a way to play this decline if it continues from here. Nat gas which had a 13 handle just a couple of weeks ago has crashed down to 10.60 after a big decline yesterday. Its bouncing a few pennies this morning. No other headlines and no other upgrades or downgrades.

Yesterday this blog scored a record number of hits. 2350 page views which doubles the all time high last August when we first crashed down to 290 on the mlp index. I don't know where you all came from but i would say thanks and come in anytime. And previous page view peaks have marked tradeable bottoms in the MLP index. Its 3 for 3 so far. So there is hope in this sea of hopelessness!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Semagroup Energy Partners (SGLP) finally put out a press release at 8:10 pm after all trading ceased. Parent may file for chapter 11 so it won't be pretty for the shares in the morning. Of course many got out at higher prices this morning. Somebody knew something.

Close at 262.01 which is the lowest close of the year by a few ticks. Who knows what tomorrow brings but energy is weak now so it can't bode well even for a bounce. More in the morning.
The mlp index is getting pulled down with the rest of energy which is getting absolutely hammered.

XOI down 2.5%
XNG down 5.7%
DJUSEN oil and gas down 3.5%
Double Short Oil & Gas up 7%
MLP index down 0.6%

We are now below the March intra-day low!
If i were a shareholder from Semgroup LP (SGLP) I would be really pissed off right now. The stock has now broken under 14. Its trading nearly 4 million shares have changed hands. The stock is down nearly 9 dollars. And not a word out of them. I.R. has not responded to me at all.

adding this....the stock is now at 11 and change. And you wonder why there is so little confidence in a group that is known for not responding to its limited partners in a timely fashion.

How about a trading halt?
I'm not sure if anyone out there bought some DUG as protection but if you should be dancing in the streets right now. Up nearly 2 dollars and closing in on 36.

MLPS now lower as energy just collapses while the dow is up 200.
One thing i've learned over the years is that just when you think it can't and never will does! Natural Gas is getting absolutely hammered today down nearly 6% and with a 10 handle. Coal is down about 5% and crude oil is now following. Coal and natural resource mlps are being taken out to the woodshed. Dorchester Minerals (DMLP) is down 2 and change. 1 point plus minus signs on Atlas Resource (ATN) Alliance Resource Partners (ARLP) Penn Virginia Group Holdings (PVG). Fractional minus signs on Atlas Pipeline (APL) Natural Resource (NRP) Alliance Holdings (AHGP), Linn Energy (LINE) and Constellation Energy Partners (CEP).

The MLP index is up 1 and change being led by Kinder Morgan Partners (KMP) which is up 1 and change. Hiland (HLND) also up 1. Fractional gains in Copano (CPNO) Oneok (OKS) and Holly Partners (HEP) among others.

Speaking of being taken out of the woodshed Semgroup Partners (SGLP) is off its intraday low of 14.11 but it is still down 6 plus points on 2 million plus shares and a company who has not said a single word about this. Nor are there any breaking headlines. Is it another short raid on rumors?
Rumour circulating according to Bloomberg on Semgroup Energy Partners (SEP) about an affiliate company. Still no headlines.
Not sure whats going on with Semgroup Energy Partners (SGLP) which is down 7 dollars on 1 million plus shares but no news headlines that i could find. Any clues out there?

MLPS doing better today overall as we are up 2 points on the index.

Brother i hope so. Something needs to kick start this sick group (even i'm starting to sound miserable!) and last nights earnings and distribution boost took Kinder Morgan (KMP) up over 2 dollars. Lets hope thats a sign that might finally draw attention to a group thats growings earnings revenues distributions and sporting double digit yields in many cases.

We've got the wind at out back this morning as stock futures are strengthening on good earnings news and dropping oil prices.

The crude oil chart is breaking down as the USO shows. Depending on how you draw it we've either broken the uptrend line or we are in the process of breaking it. Actually a gap down open here followed by more selling may finally complete the island reversal formation. And that may be signally something other than a short term correction. No corporate news this morning and no upgrades or downgrades but we are on watch for earnings and distribution boosts.

The cry for offshore drilling continues to increase. I suggest we start here!

Works for me!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Kinder Morgan (KMP) is trading actively (for an mlp) after the close. It closed at 55.55 and it is bidding 57.50.
After the close Kinder Morgan issued earnings and a distribution boost. Stock is up after the close. Also Copano (CPNO) boosted the distribution after the close.

Made it back up over 263. Bleak out there for MLPS but there is always tomorrow.

Looks like the ledge at 262 has held for the time being. Last hour upticks taking us over 263...for now anyway.
Teetering on the brink of the MLP abyss! And no sign of a bounce.

262.44 down 3.08
We are following broad energy which is down 2 to 3%. We are six ticks above the low of the day and a handful above the 262.18 March low; all this while financials take the rest of the market higher in a reflex rally.

Anything that has energy attached to it is in free fall right now. Oil has finally broken that uptrend line at 110 on the USO (136 ISH on Crude) and has imploded after the weekly inventory numbers. The 262 retest is underway with the MLP index down nearly 3 points.

What a mess. Day low is 262.67. Dow up 104. With the sell off in energy stocks even the refiners which were up nicely have come off their highs. Exxon traded under 80 briefly. At some point MLPS should separate from the others. The Double Short oil and gas (DUG) is up 2 and near 35. At least that hedge has helped considerably.
Doing some repair work on the tickers this morning...taking out old..adding new. I can't seem to get the right codes for the futures spot month contracts for oil nat gas and the s&p500. If anyone knows what they are could you please let me know.

Stock futures firming up so we'll see where this takes us.

Does it not feel like we're never going to get to the bottom? That eternal feeling of hope followed by despair followed by hope and then despair? Well got the bear market blues!

The MLP index dropped 6 points yesterday as it followed energy stocks and their implosion. Looks like with a lower start we could get there today early in the trading session. So we wait for any sign of a bounce.

The mlp index would look far worse but Kinder Morgan Partenrs (KMP) has about the only solid looking chart in the group. As one of the granddads in mlp land its chart actually is about as bullish as any out there.

Enterprise Products Partners (EPD) is the other big component in here and just moves sideways between 27 & 31.

Distribution hikes on the menu this morning as Enterprise hikes and of course so does Duncan Partners (DEP) but this falls under the who cares file as we are in a bear market. No other news this morning and no upgrades or downgrades. Crude oil is down again and is approaching a critical trendline support @ 110 on the USO. The equity has broken down and it is signalling a breakdown in the commodity is imminent. That could be a driver for stocks if we see another big drop after yesterday's 6 dollar drop. Banks are being forced to liquidate as they try to stay alive. When you have to sell first you sell your losers and then at the end you sell what you have left. And some banks have nothing left! Stock futures are lower which is good to flush out sellers and get that climax that we almost had yesterday. Hope springs eternal today!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Calumet Specialty Products (CLMT) announces its distirbution. No cut from last quarter so things i guess didn't get any worse. We also have an open market insider purchase have to click the link to find out. Oneok (OKS) goes to 1.06 on the distribution from 1.04. Stock was down 1.42 today.

Dow closes down 92. MLPS down over 6 and near the lows of the day. Another retest of 262 looms tomorrow unless the market can get some footing.

Dow giving it up in the final minutes as are MLPS. The Double Short Oil and Gas (DUG) is up 2.47 today as all things energy get hammered...except for a small rally in refineries. Dow down 80 points and sinking.
Today's 6 dollar plus sell off in oil will mean nothing unless it sees followthrough tomorrow. The USO came right down to the trendline at 110 and bounced to 112 where it closed. Dow desperately trying to hold on to a small gain.
Add Western Energy (WES) and Penn Virginia Holdings (PVG) to the list of winners today as they've climbed above zero.

MLP index down 4.95.
Market backing and filling in here with the dow off a handful of points. MLPS off the lows but the index is still down 5 as energy stocks are getting hit hard overall. Crude down 7 bucks and off the low which was minus 9. Nat gas down hard too and so is coal.

The overall market has every excuse to rally in here. Its now or never. MLPS usually tend to play catch up so lets get the overall market to turn and MLPS will follow. Only 1 mlp is up and thats Energy Transfer Equity (ETE) which is 2 cents higher. The rest continue lower but most off the lows of the morning.
Oil suddenly down 9 dollars...and the dow has come back to minus 20
Down nearly 6 on the MLP index with the volitility index approaching 31. Its throw them all out the window time. Watch for broken glass. Only 1 mlp is up and thats Calumet Specialty Products (CLMT) which is up 6 cents. 2 gps are unchanged Hiland Group Holdings (HPGP) and Inergy Holdings (NRGP) and those trade by appointment only anyway. The rest are down. 1 point plus losers include Nustar (NS) Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) Natural Resource (NRP) Holly Partners (HEP) Plains All American (PAA) EV Partners (EVEP) Penn Virginia Holdings (PVG) Kinder Morgan (KMP) and Oneok (OKS). Lots of fractional losers on the board as well.

The bear growls but this is the kind of action that could open a door for some sort of rally. We are still above 262.18 on the mlp index but it could get tenious.
Getting close to the open with futures off the lows. I think the market is so prime for a big bounce but there needs to be something to get it going. Maybe Bernake will say something important.

Energy Transfer (ETP) working through their secondary in the premarket with the stock at 39.50.

Feels like we may be at the beginning of some sort of capitulation.

The MLP index may have had its capitulation last week. God knows i hope that is the case. Meanwhile the dow is setting up this morning with stock futures down 15 points on the S&P. The VIX closed at 28 and change yesterday and should open close to 30 or higher this morning with any look signalling that fear may be fear and perhaps from that, a bottom can form. But it certainly has been very painful to watch.

Many were openly wondering for the last several days why Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) got no upside from a distribution increase, good earnings, and a guidance boost. Now we know why as they do a stock offering. Nor did we get any upside from Plains (PAA) and Regency (RGNC) when they did similar announces on guidance and distribution. Its the world we live in these days. Energy Transfer (ETP) has a few trades down 1 in the pre market.

Nothing on the upgrade downgrade list this morning but it wouldn't matter anyway. No other corporate developements this morning. Lets get the open out of the way and go from there.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Plains All American (PAA) joins the list of distribution boosters this morning. Can't hurt.

Market holding on to gains but off the highs on the futures.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


I think this describes it pretty well!

And now that the band aid is in place we have room for a reflex relief rally and it could be a sizebale one. When you drop 2000 points over a matter of weeks without any meaningful bounce...its time for a meaningful bounce. I would expect MLPS which actually bottomed last Wednesday to perhaps lead the charge higher. And we have some news this morning on Regency Partners (RGNC) which echos what Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) told us last week. They are also raising guidance for the rest of the year and its above the top of their prior range. Also this morning news from Quest Energy Partners (QELP) which closes a deal, gets an asset drop, and ups the distribution. Should be good for both stocks.

No upgrades or downgrades this morning so far. Crude oil is down over a dollar this morning. There was a Barrons piece this weekend which points out that with oil at 145, the value of the known reserves is greater than all of the worlds stock markets combined! Sign of a top? Stock futures are sharply higher at the open but we'll see what happens after that. I would suspect there will be one or two attempts to take em down and test the resolve of the bulls.

Friday, July 11, 2008

MLP index making a nice comeback here as it is only down fractionally now after being down over 2 points at one juncture. On the whole for MLPS it was a lot better this week then in other things!
Did any of you see this massive volitlity...we went from -200 to positive back to minus back to minus again...nuts controlling the nut house. No one wants to be long in case the world ends but no one wants to be short in case it doesn't!
Last hour ought to be a gem! Why torture. Heading into a weekend with the world hanging on a thread. They better come up with something between now and Monday. Who wants to be long?

Despite our agony we do sleep a little better here in MLP land.
Well considering the horror show that's going on today MLPS are holding up quite well for the most part. There are more mlps down then up but not by much. The index is down about 1 and some change. Oil seems to be directing every tick but even big energy is taking gas today.

Watching how the day progresses. We may be on the way to putting in some sort of climax bottom with this Fannie Mae shit.

I ask you, could there be anything else wrong out there? The GE earnings were actually okay and the outlook was not tragic but who cares. Oil is up nearly 10 dollars from 2pm yesterday as the middle east appears to be on the brink of war. Also this morning the NY Times says Fannie and Freddie may get a taxpayer bailout which would reduce the equity to zero. Stock futures are down 14 points on the S&P pre open and all since 5am when futures were flat. So i guess its a fasten your seatbelt type of day.

MLPS at least have enjoyed strong relative outperformance over the last 2 days and i'm trying to figure out why this is the case. Could it be that these ridiculous yields are drawing money for those who want a safer place to be? Can't go to many traditional areas so maybe, just maybe we are the only place to go. However i would caution that 2 days does not a trend make. Lets see if this trend continues today. Either way you have to be encouraged that the 262 March bottom held and that the index is up nearly 12 points from that low on Tuesday.

No corporate news and no upgrades or downgrades so far.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

3 one million share blocks crossed on Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) in the following order.

1.5 million @ 42.63 @ 16:04
1.5 million @ 42.75 @ 16:15
1.0 million @ 41.04 @ 16.17

After hours bid 42.80 x 43.25

No news or sec filings that i could see.
Up 4.11 now @ 273.43!
MLPS have the bit in the teeth and they are running. At the highs for the day up nearly 4 points.
Huge spike in oil as they head into the close. Never a dull momment.
Somebody's buying as MLPS continue to move higher. The index is up 3.50 now. 2 days of relative out performance does not a trend make however it is encouraging that we are now almost 10 points above yesteday's intraday low.
Not that it necessarily matters but check the pe on some of these mlps. Inergy Holdings (NRGP) of which i am long sells now for a pe of 6! Amazing.

MLP index up over 2 points and at the highs of the day. Nice to see!
Another odd day here. The mlp index is actually higher by half a point after being down 1 earlier. Buckeye (BPL) is back over 40 and up 2 days in a row! Glory! Also leading the charge here are the coal mlps which are up major fractions to 1 point.

Inergy Holdings (NRGP) and Hiland (HLND) are down 1 to 2 points as the biggest losers but there is no volume. Whoops a buy has Hiland now up 2 points.

Dow is swinging back and forth across the unch line but the broader averages are higher so thats a good sign. Hoping for another day of relative outperformance. We need to wait for all the pompous windbags to finish airing out the gas on capitol hill and we can get back to business.

Okay i'm truly confused after yesterday It was the worst day for financial stocks since 2002. Everything went down yesterday except for Mc Donalds, some utilities and MLPS. Now take a look at that chart and look back at the March low and the reaction the next day and notice that it was about an identical performance you will ever see. And notice it was a quick ride to 290 from there so is there a reason to be cautiously optimistic?
The dow chart is so stretched to the downside in here that at big snapback rally could come at anytime but what is the catylist going to be. 2 banks after the close yesterday came out and told us they are not going broke tomorrow (maybe next week but not tomorrow) Premarket action there isn't exactly overwhelming but its early.

Or perhaps the catylist could come from oil where the uptrend line sits at 135 waiting to be broken and oil is 136 and holding this morning. 108.50 would be the level to look for on the USO for those of you following this. Thats about 1 point below yesterday's close.

Meanwhile no lack of catylists for MLPS as we have some corporate news last night from Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) which boosts the distribution and raises guidance for the rest of the year. Stock is trading near its 52 week low and has an 8.3% yield. Also we have a distribution boost from Dorchester Minerals (DMLP) which is raising its distribution to $0.769206 (could they have just said 77 cents!). You have to love a distribution that goes out to the 6th decimal point!

Looks like a catylist just showed up as Dow Chemical is buying Rohm & Haas for a huge premium. Futures moving higher now. Crude is a little higher and notice lately its not moving on headlines that 2 weeks ago would have sent crude up 10 bucks. Nat gas numbers out today. Nothing yet on the upgrade downgrade list.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Still up 4 points on the MLP index as we head into the close while everything else implodes as apparently the world is coming to an end. Dow down 220.

I guess in an end of world might be handy to have a gaspipe.
Down 100 points on the dow....big energy as measured by the DJ Oil and gas index (DJUSEN) is down .75% and @ the lows of the day...and the MLP index is up over 5 and over 270.

Go figure. Maybe 262 is it kids.
Still holding that 5 point gain which is even more impressive considering that big energy has turned flat to lower and the overall market is moving with every tick in crude oil. It will be interesting to see what happens if crude follows natural gas and turns lower and if mlps can disconnect from big energy and hold on to the bulk of their gains.

We have got to break that uptrend line in the USO @ 108.50
Okay so far so good with a nearly 5 point bounce on the MLP index which is well outperforming everything else for a change. But its a long day ahead.
I think this describes the mlp investor these days perfectly.

btw if i had to venture a guess the oil market is rallying ahead of the inventory numbers and then sell off as they will be spun bearishly by the market no matter what.

Of course famous last words here and i am not putting my money where that opinion is.

Which i'm sure is what everyone feels like around here. The MLP index chart is something akin to having teeth pulled with plyers and no novacaine. Yesterdays low was just a handful of ticks above the March low of 262.18 from which we rallied back to 290 in a hurry as the overall market rallied back. I wonder however whether we are done yet even though yesterday's reversal in the overall market was a nice thing. It was just one day.

In march it was the smaller MLPS leading the way thanks to private equity issues and now this time its the big boys littering the new lows list. Oneok (OKS) traded at 51, Buckeye (BPL) under 40, Nustar (NS) under 45. And the gps of Buckeye (BGH) and Nustar (NSH) are at levels not seen since their ipos.

Crude oil meanwhile has come back 10 dollars in 2 days from the high print of 145.89 and is up this morning by about 2 dollars. Bounce to be sure. Note the uptrend has not been broken yet and it would take a close under 109 in the USO to tell us that this sell off is something more meaningful than just another one of those fast pullbacks. It does feel different this time but i can't be sure. It closed yesterday right near that uptrend line at 108.46 (34 day moving average).

Remember kids i pointed out over the last few weeks that if big energy cracks it was going to take everything down with it. The double short oil and gas(DUG) has broken out of a base but what has been impressive to me is the enormous volume that is being traded here . On balance volume has broken out to a new high so this could be signaling a change in leadership away from energy and the like to perhaps something new.

At least the rise in DUG has offset some of the pain endured here although i must admit that my decision to start buying refineries like Valero (VLO)and Tesoro (TSO) has been a disaster so far. Lesson learn here. I tried to get too cute by reasoning that refineries would benefit if the oil price came in. Maybe that will be the case in the long haul but it sure isn't the case now.

The only thing that could make matters worse in here is some tragic coporate developement which gladly is not the case this morning. No news. Lehman is upgrading Penn Virginia Holdings (PVG) to outperform from market perform which in Lehman speak means if the market goes down it will go down less. That one has gone from 36 to 27 in a hurry during this correction as coal has crashed.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Nustar (NS) & Buckeye (BPL) are trading like they are on their way to zero. Buckeye Holdings (BGH) and Nustar Holdings (NSH) are trading near their ipo prices from a couple of years ago.

Amazing isn't it. MLP down 5 at the low of 262.87. If they are going to bounce they better do it soon. Overall market is moving higher.
Heading for the 262.18 intraday low. They are just throwing mlps out the window at this point. The losers list is a mile long and many mlps are down 1 point or more.

Time for a bike ride!
Down below the March closing low but not the intraday low. MLPS getting tossed out the window with all energy stocks. The DUG trade is working with the dug now at 31.30 and up another 1 and change this morning. Glory! Something is working. Now with oil down nearly 6 bucks and that island reversal pattern on the chart getting a second look, maybe the refiners could catch a bid in here.
Still haven't broken that uptrend on USO (CRUDE) but who knows..maybe a challenge today?

The oil and gas index broke down yesterday and should open this morning below its 89 day moving average. Bearish for big energy in my view.

Btw for the MLP index the closing low is 266.01 and the intra day low is 262.18.
Morgan Keegan raises Genesis (GEL) to outperform from market perform. Stock is at 17 and some change.

Market tone improving as oil is selling off another 3 bucks to under 139. Futures have turned higher after being down 15 pts on the S&P at 5am.
Stock futures have come off the lows while crude oil is selling off down nearly 2 dollars and under 140.

Wachovia starts K-Sea (KSP) at outperform.

Get set for some biblical wailing and gnashing of teeth this morning as markets world wide are selling off hard. One bodes well to listen to Margo Channing.

And make no mistake with stock futures down nearly 15 points pre market it isn't going to be pretty for MLPS either. If i could map out the trading pattern today it would be a very hard down open with followthrough where we make a climax low around 11am-12noon and then turn em around after lunch. MLPS can take em down to that 262 March low which quite frankly i never thought we would see. One saving grace for me in this sell off is that i am long the Double Short Oil and Gas which was up nearly 2 dollars yesterday and it should at least open higher this morning and is helping to cushion the losses on this end. Since we are at the point that everything is going down we just have to hang on and wait for the turn.
This is an early post so i will update things this morning as headlines break.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Well it took a while but at least the double short Oil and Gas (DUG) has a nearly 2 point gain today as we are now at the lows of the day..down nearly 5 points on the mlp index. Getting close to that 262 level.
Down over 4 points now on the MLP index. 262 ain't that far away kids. EV Partners (EVEP) is down 2.09 and is the biggest loser. DCP Midstream (DPM) Constellation (CEP) Line Energy (LINE) Holly Partners (HEP) Alliance Resource (ARLP) and Suburban Propane (SPH) all down between 1 and 2 points.

A horror show as all energy stocks are getting thrown out the window.
Energy taking gas now as Oil is down nearly 6 dollars. Natural gas is down over 60 cents. The overall market is a little higher but financials are weak so my guess is more selling is coming after they get back from lunch. The mlp index is down nearly 2 points and near 271. The winners list is fairly short. Atlas Pipeline Partners (APL) Calumet (CLMT) Dorchester (DMLP) and K Sea Partners (KSP) among the few winners with fractional gains.

Losers include Constellation (CEP) and EV Partners (EVEP) which are down 1 or more. Just about every other MLP is down fractions to 1 point.

Looking for the energy stocks to really get nailed this afternoon unless we see an oil comeback. Dow just turned negative.
Oil down 4 dollars and Nat gas imploding down 44 cents as of this time. Interesting day ahead.

I'll address the question immediately and that is down at least for a while longer. The mlp index has fallen off the cliff again and we start the week at 272.99. Looks like a retest of 262 is in order here and the reason this time will be the shedding of energy stocks in general as they get blown out of portfolios. So the way it works here is the shoot first ask questions later. Last week we saw the last winners in this bear market finally roll over. So my guess is mlps will suffer here if big energy suffers a breakdown rightly or wrongly. We did not participate on the way up so of course we should participate on the way lease initially.

The dow chart is a horror and i think we have at least another 500 dow points to shed here as we head below 11k in my view (believe me i hope i'm wrong).
And this chart of big oil (XOI index) clearly is rolling over so the pressure points are there.

The wild cards this morning are the dollar which is screaming higher across the board this morning and that has pulled commodities down across the board including crude oil which is down 2.50 from Thursday's close above 145. This might provide broader market support at least for awhile but all the other market problems do weigh heavily and may exert themselves after the open. Nat gas is also down about 20 cents this morning. Stock futures were actually down nearly 9 points in overseas trading on Friday but they have rallied overnight back to even from Thursday's close.

MLP corporate news this morning is nonexistent and there are no upgrades or downgrades.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Barrons lead piece is on the bear market along with some historical perspective. Worth reading. Its available free with no registration required.

Friday, July 04, 2008


Two charts to take a look at over the weekend. Of course our MLP chart is telling us we are in free fall again and it looks like we will at least retest that 262 March low and below that support is at 255. Meanwhile the Double Short Oil and Gas (DUG) looks to me like its put in a double bottom and is ready to breakout of this base. Note that late last week we saw the winners in this market rolling over. Coal has crashed; down 20% in 2 days. Couple that with action today in Europe where S&P futures closed down nearly 9 points as Goldman downgrades a number of European banks. I think we may be setting up for a final big selling climax Monday and Tuesday imho. At least i hope thats the case because until we can get that final flush the torture will continue.

Crude oil closed down 1.04 at 144.25 in electronic trading today but there weren't alot of players around so i don't want to read to much into this. I guess we have to sit tight until Monday. Can't lose money over the weekend.

Now to something that's been bugging me a bit. I love lots of comments on my posts, don't misunderstand me. But unless you own Cheniere Energy (LNG,CQP) or US Shipping (USS) where clearly there are corporate issues...please remember that unless there is something news specific to those companies that we are in a bear market. It asks no questions and takes no prisoners. Its all about selling and all about cash. MLPS may not be understood by most people because they are in a special class of security. There is no access to capital so deals have been few and as wise "Mr Pipes" has pointed out several times; it is interesting that private people seem to be seeing value in here. Look at Plains All American (PAA) where Oxidental Petroleum has taken a 10% stake in the general partner. They must see something of value there. GE has its stake in Regency Partners (RGNC).

So when someone posts and says...this stock is a pos because i bought it and it went down...well thats life. I made the mistake of buying refiners too early because i reasoned that oil was about to crack and refiners would benefit. Maybe i will be right eventually but its obvious that i bought too early. My misjudement short term but it might pay off long term. If this game were easy it wouldn't be worth playing.

One day this bear market will end and we will look back and realized we have endured a vicious bear and survived. Think of all those holders of financials or General Motors or anyone of hundreds of companies i could name that have seen large chunks of their portfolios completely wiped out with no chance of recovery. Things are bad here..but thankfully not that bad.

Okay so enjoy the beach...the dogs...ribs...fireworks. And we'll hit the gate running on Monday.

One final note. Here is some IRS news about partnerships that might make you happy.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Early clues as coal stocks like Arch Coal (ACI) and Peabody (BTU) are down at the open. Coal (KOL) is down 2.5%. So is Potash (POT). So i would expect yesterdays selloff in materials minerals and energy to continue. But its all about 8:30am
ECB raises 1/4 pt. No commentary until 8:30pm European banking officials probably need an espresso break before the press conference.

Of course crude is up another 2 dollars this morning as we're pushing 146. Why not just take it to 150 and be done with it. An unusually early developement of a tropical depression in the far Eastern Atlantic will probably get some play at some point even though this will never have Gulf of Mexico impact. So we have that, the ECB about to raise rates and the employment numbers or lack there of. This is coming off a fascinating day yesterday where coal got killed and we finally saw the market leaders getting taken out and mutilated. I would expect more selling in these guys today. MLPS actually as a group didn't do too badly yesterday as it was held up by a nearly 2 point gain in Plains All American on the OXY-PETE deal.

1PM close today ahead of the 4th of July holiday. No corporate headlines this morning and no upgrades or downgrades so far.

posts as news items break this morning. Stock futures flat ahead of all of this. Dollar a little higher.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Well kids the good news is they have finally gotten around to the last men standing...BIG ENERGY and the SHIT stocks. They went into absolute freefall this afternoon and the losses continue in after hours. The dow chart looks beyond hideous. It could be that the selloff is getting late in the game now that they are selling everything. 10,500-700 is where that double bottom support is...we're 500 pts above it. So if the dollar completely collapses tomorrow and oil goes to 150 and the European central bank hikes and says they're ready to hike again...i think we could get there by 10am!

Maybe we should spend some time with Harvey!

Fascinating afternoon as they are shooting all coal stocks including coal mlps like Alliance (ARLP,AHGP) which are both down sharply. And big energy is now selling off sharply. But mlps are up over a point on the index as Plains continues to lead the way higher up nearly 2 points. Looks like MLPS are responding to financials doing better today while the shit stocks go down.

Last hour fireworks for sure!
Strange day in Coal land as the mineral is getting crushed (KOL) down nearly 4 points. Arch Coal (ACI) is down nearly 10 bucks. No news that i could find. But it is making for interesting tape action. MLPS are up 1 and some change on the index as Plains All American (PAA) which i s a large component is up 1 and change. Magellan (MMP) Martin Midstream (MMLP) Sunoco Logistics (SXL) Atlas Energy Resources (ATN) are up major fractions.

Coal mlps getting hit like Alliance (ARLP), Natural Resouce (NRP) Penn Virginia (PVR) and Penn Virginia Holdings (PVG) all down. Alliance and Natural Resouce down between 1.50 and 2 bucks Gas mlps like Constellation (CEP) and Holly Partners (HEP) losing fractions this morning.

Still in the process of probing bottoms in here while crude touched its top again. They are all linked together.

I've never been quite sure how the marketplace views these things in the MLP space but this morning we have news that a wholly owned subsidiary of Oxidental Petroleum is taking a stake in the general partners (GP) of Plains All American (PAA) for an undisclosed sum. Looks like some partners are selling their stake.

In the past these types of moves have had some impact...and sometimes they have no impact. One trade in the premarket on Plains this morning of 100 shares which is worthless so we'll wait for the open.

Penn Virginia Resources (PVR) picked up some more assets in news issues after the close yesterday. This is a coal play that has not moved much recently with other coals probably because of the general disfavor in the mlp space more than anything else.

Other than that we have a relatively quiet morning with everyone wondering if yesterday's market key reversal was anything other than the end of some selling but not the final bottom or something more important. Also we wait for the ECB rate hike which is expected tomorrow and hopefully its a one and done situation but in the event that they do nothing we would probably sow the seeds for a big dollar rally...especially if the employment numbers aren't a disaster. And that could drive a stake through the heart of the oil vampire. We can only hope.

Nothing much else happening this morning. The upgrade downgrade list is empty. Crude is a little lower ahead of inventory numbers.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

One day this might actually mean something but oil is closing near the lows of the day for the 3rd consecutive day. Just throwing that out there for anybody grasping at straws.
You've got to love Goldman Sachs downgrading the refiners this morning on...are you ready for this folks...lower margins. Next thing you know Goldman will tell people its time to sell the banks!

Free fall to down 140 on the the dow as now we have Potash down 12 and the last group up today which was big energy finally turn down. MLP index down 2.02 and near the lows of the day. Now the next thing to watch for is if the stock market selling begins to spread to all other markets including oil. If it gets real ugly this afternoon that's just what may happen. And that may be the signal for the beginning of the final capitualtion..however long that takes.
A couple of intraday rally attempts do not seem to be holding here. Financials were up but they are down. MLPS are off the lows and the index is down just 50 cents. Oil and nat gas about the only thing up today along with some tech. Even shit stocks (AG) are down.

Winners list of MLPS has grown since the first half hour. Losers are contained except for Penn Virgina Holdings (PVG) and Natural Resource Partners (NRP) which are both down 1 point or more.
We at the MLP blog like to be optimistic even if it means we go to the well and drink a little bit too much of the Kool aid! That being said some interesting things on the tape this morning.

  1. JP Morgan (JPM) which has been a good indicator lately of daily trading trends and the first to turn in either direction is higher.
  2. Coal (KOL) is down sharply today
  3. We opened up near the lows and we seem to be holding them so far.
  4. Potash is down. I know that this last one is simply against all natural law but its off 6 bucks. This sell off ain't over until the big runners finally get hammered. Watching carefully.

MLPS themselves are down with everything else with index off just shy of 2 points and at least 275 seems to be holding so far. Coal mlps are down the hardest at this point.

Crude coming off its highs and the dow is back above 11300. Its desperately trying to bottom in here.


The bear is growling this morning with stock futures in free fall collapse which may not necessarily be a bad thing if it leads to some sort of selling climax. But if you ask me we may need to get down to a 10k handle on the dow before things improve. And the mlp chart is following along as we are testing 275 and maybe we need to go all the way back down to 262 where the March low is.

You can see on the dow chart where that double bottom is around 10,750 and beyond that there is more support around 10,200. Ugh!

Oil just keeps going up 2 dollars again this morning although we have seen oil close near its lows for the last 2 days. File that under the department of grasping at straws. However i will say again that this sell off won't be finished until the market leaders are taken out and executed with everything else. No sign of that so far.

A couple of anal-ist moves this morning as Friedman Billings raises its target on Legacy Partners (LGCY) from 28 to 30. UBS is starting Spectra Partners (SEP) at a buy; no price target given. No other corporate developements so far. The bear market continues to take its toll in here but at least we have 8 to 10% yields to cushion us just a bit.

Peter Schiff is on CNBC to tell us how the world is coming to an end for us and it wouldn't have happened if we had a gold standard and if interest rates weren't kept artificallly low. Hyperinflation and a severe recession are coming. Always the optimist Mr Schiff.