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Investing Topics: Washington Watch

03/16/18: Master Limited Partnerships and the Wrath of FERC

By Roger S. Conrad on Mar. 16, 2018
The Alerian MLP Index has shed 16 percent of its value since Jan. 29, more than wiping out the gains over the prior month and a half. This selling has pulled this basket of 40 prominent master limited partnerships (MLP) to its lowest point in more than two years. Yesterday’s sharp selloff stemmed from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) ruling that MLPs can no longer recover an income tax allowance on regulated interstate pipelines that operate under cost-of-service agreements.

Trumponomics: Six Observations for Income investors

By Roger S. Conrad on Mar. 10, 2018
Whether you support or oppose President Trump’s economic policies, they’re undeniably bold. Already we’ve seen unprecedented fiscal stimulus for an economic expansion this long-lived, the rollback of years of business regulation and the biggest push for trade protections since Smoot-Hawley.

How Low Will Utility Stocks Go?

By Roger S. Conrad on Feb. 3, 2018
We examine the drivers behind the recent pullback in utility stocks and the potential for more downside.

Utilities and Trump: So Far So Good

By Roger S. Conrad on Jan. 15, 2018
Utility stocks have lagged in the new year, but developments on the policy front largely have played out in the sector's favor.

Utility Stocks and Tax Reform

By Roger S. Conrad on Jan. 3, 2018
Regulated gas, electric and water utilities won’t benefit directly from the Tax Cut and Jobs Act’s signature change: a reduction in the top corporate tax rate to 21 percent from 35 percent. But tax reform still creates a number of opportnities for regulated utilities, especially the strongest operators.

Our First Real Look At Trump’s Energy Policy

By Roger S. Conrad on Feb. 24, 2017
ARPA-E's Energy Innovation Summit, which takes place next week, could give us early insights into President Trump's energy policies.

Merger Mania

By Roger S. Conrad on Feb. 12, 2017
Access to inexpensive capital and the pursuit of scale continue to drive consolidation in the utility and telecommunication services sectors. These trends create opportunities for savvy investors.

An Eye on Washington and Two Eyes on Fourth-Quarter Earnings

By Roger S. Conrad on Feb. 12, 2017
Although interest rates and federal policies can affect the stock market and create challenges and opportunities, how companies have positioned themselves and how management teams react to changes ultimately shape investors’ returns.

Election 2016: Plenty of Good News for Utilities

By Roger S. Conrad on Nov. 15, 2016
While the market sorts out the implications of the 2016 federal election, the recent selloff in utility stocks and results at the state level create opportunities for savvy investors.

Election 2016: What’s at Stake for Utility Stocks?

By Roger S. Conrad on Oct. 24, 2016
The upcoming gubernatorial elections could have important implications for utilities in these states.



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