Head-To-Head Comparison: Williams Partners (WPZ) versus Its Peers

Williams Partners (NYSE: WPZ) is one of 250 public companies in the “Oil & Gas Exploration and Production” industry, but how does it weigh in compared to its competitors? We will compare Williams Partners to related companies based on the strength of its dividends, earnings, valuation, profitability, risk, analyst recommendations and institutional ownership.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

22.4% of Williams Partners shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 61.2% of shares of all “Oil & Gas Exploration and Production” companies are held by institutional investors. 12.1% of shares of all “Oil & Gas Exploration and Production” companies are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Volatility & Risk

Williams Partners has a beta of 1.45, indicating that its share price is 45% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Williams Partners’ competitors have a beta of 1.30, indicating that their average share price is 30% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Dividends

Williams Partners pays an annual dividend of $2.40 per share and has a dividend yield of 6.5%. Williams Partners pays out 157.9% 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 1.6% and pay out 308.9% of their earnings in the form of a dividend. Williams Partners is clearly a better dividend stock than its competitors, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and target prices for Williams Partners and its competitors, as provided 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 1449 7535 11966 260 2.52

Williams Partners presently has a consensus target price of $44.85, suggesting a potential upside of 20.68%. As a group, “Oil & Gas Exploration and Production” companies have a potential upside of 32.67%. Given Williams Partners’ competitors higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Williams Partners has less favorable growth aspects than its competitors.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Williams Partners and its competitors gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue NetIncome Price/Earnings Ratio
Williams Partners $7.49 billion $431.00 million 24.45
Williams Partners Competitors $1.89 billion -$443.16 million 22.49

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

Profitability

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

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Williams Partners 17.02% 5.55% 2.90%
Williams Partners Competitors -443.57% -3.39% 2.75%

Summary

Williams Partners beats its competitors on 12 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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