Markwest Energy Partners (NYSE: MWE) and Crestwood Equity Partners (NYSE:CEQP) are both energy companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, earnings, dividends, analyst recommendations, valuation, risk and profitabiliy.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Markwest Energy Partners and Crestwood Equity Partners’ gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Markwest Energy Partners N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Crestwood Equity Partners $2.81 billion 0.53 $325.80 million ($2.70) -7.89

Crestwood Equity Partners has higher revenue and earnings than Markwest Energy Partners.

Profitability

This table compares Markwest Energy Partners and Crestwood Equity Partners’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Markwest Energy Partners 10.37% 2.42% 1.71%
Crestwood Equity Partners -6.22% -2.65% -1.20%

Dividends

Crestwood Equity Partners pays an annual dividend of $2.40 per share and has a dividend yield of 11.3%. Markwest Energy Partners does not pay a dividend. Crestwood Equity Partners pays out -88.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Markwest Energy Partners has increased its dividend for 6 consecutive years.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current recommendations for Markwest Energy Partners and Crestwood Equity Partners, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Markwest Energy Partners 0 0 0 0 N/A
Crestwood Equity Partners 1 3 3 0 2.29

Crestwood Equity Partners has a consensus price target of $26.33, suggesting a potential upside of 23.63%. Given Crestwood Equity Partners’ higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Crestwood Equity Partners is more favorable than Markwest Energy Partners.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

63.7% of Crestwood Equity Partners shares are held by institutional investors. 36.2% of Crestwood Equity Partners shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

Crestwood Equity Partners beats Markwest Energy Partners on 7 of the 11 factors compared between the two stocks.

Markwest Energy Partners Company Profile

MarkWest Energy Partners, L.P. (MarkWest) is a master limited partnership engaged in the gathering, processing and transportation of natural gas; the gathering, transportation, fractionation, storage and marketing of natural gas liquids (NGLs), and the gathering and transportation of crude oil. The Company operates in four segments: Marcellus, Utica, Northeast and Southwest. The Marcellus segment provides integrated natural gas midstream services in southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia. The Company’s MarkWest Utica EMG provides gathering, processing, fractionation and marketing services. The Northeast segment assets include the Kenova, Boldman, Cobb, Kermit and Langley natural gas processing complexes, an NGL pipeline and the Siloam fractionation facility. The Company owns a system that consists of natural gas gathering pipelines, centralized compressor stations, two natural gas processing complexes and two NGL pipelines.

Crestwood Equity Partners Company Profile

Crestwood Equity Partners LP is a holding company and a master limited partnership (MLP). The Company develops, acquires, owns or controls, and operates assets and operations within the energy midstream sector. The Company’s segments include gathering and processing (G&P), which includes its natural gas, crude oil and produced water G&P operations; storage and transportation, which includes its natural gas and crude oil storage and transportation operations, and marketing, supply and logistics, which includes its natural gas liquid (NGL) supply and logistics business, crude oil storage and rail loading facilities and fleet, and salt production business. The Company provides infrastructure solutions to service natural gas and crude oil shale plays across the United States. It owns and operates a portfolio of crude oil and natural gas gathering, processing, storage and transportation assets. Its operating assets are owned by or through its subsidiary, Crestwood Midstream Partners LP.

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