Williams Partners (NYSE: WPZ) is one of 247 public companies in the “Oil & Gas Exploration and Production” industry, but how does it weigh in compared to its peers? We will compare Williams Partners to related companies based on the strength of its institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, valuation, risk, earnings, profitability and dividends.

Dividends

Williams Partners pays an annual dividend of $2.40 per share and has a dividend yield of 6.4%. Williams Partners pays out 143.7% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. As a group, “Oil & Gas Exploration and Production” companies pay a dividend yield of 1.8% and pay out 384.2% of their earnings in the form of a dividend. Williams Partners is clearly a better dividend stock than its peers, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Williams Partners and its peers gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue EBITDA Price/Earnings Ratio
Williams Partners $8.00 billion $3.78 billion 22.62
Williams Partners Competitors $1.39 billion $598.77 million 21.10

Williams Partners has higher revenue and earnings than its peers. Williams Partners is trading at a higher price-to-earnings ratio than its peers, indicating that it is currently more expensive than other companies in its industry.

Insider and Institutional Ownership

22.7% of Williams Partners shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 62.4% of shares of all “Oil & Gas Exploration and Production” companies are owned by institutional investors. 12.1% of shares of all “Oil & Gas Exploration and Production” companies are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent recommendations for Williams Partners and its peers, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Williams Partners 0 2 10 1 2.92
Williams Partners Competitors 1442 7482 12113 257 2.53

Williams Partners currently has a consensus target price of $44.85, indicating a potential upside of 18.70%. As a group, “Oil & Gas Exploration and Production” companies have a potential upside of 39.25%. Given Williams Partners’ peers higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Williams Partners has less favorable growth aspects than its peers.

Profitability

This table compares Williams Partners and its peers’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Williams Partners 17.82% 5.90% 3.03%
Williams Partners Competitors -430.40% -1.17% 1.87%

Risk & Volatility

Williams Partners has a beta of 1.4, indicating that its stock price is 40% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Williams Partners’ peers have a beta of 1.41, indicating that their average stock price is 41% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

Williams Partners beats its peers on 11 of the 15 factors compared.

Williams Partners Company Profile

Williams Partners L.P. is an energy infrastructure company. The Company has operations across the natural gas value chain from gathering, processing, and interstate transportation of natural gas and natural gas liquids to petchem production of ethylene, propylene, and other olefins. It operates through its Northeast G&P, Atlantic-Gulf, West segment. Under the Northeast G&P segment, it owns and operates fractionation facilities at Moundsville, de-ethanization and condensate facilities at its Oak Grove processing plant. The Atlantic Gulf segment includes the Company’s interstate natural gas pipeline, Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC. The West segment includes its interstate natural gas pipeline, Northwest Pipeline, and natural gas gathering processing and treating operations.

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