Oneok Completes Spinoff Of Gas Distribution Business

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Oneok ( OKE ) completed the spinoff of its natural gas distribution business this week with the creation ofOne Gas ( OGS ), one of the nation's largest natural gas distribution companies, with more than 2 million customers.

One Gas combines Kansas Gas Service, Oklahoma Natural Gas and Texas Gas Service. Oneok shareholders received one share of the new company for every four shares of Oneok they own. Rather than issue fractional shares, the company will pay cash.

Tulsa-based Oneok has been around since 1906. One division, Oneok Partners, is a master limited partnership for gathering, processing, storing and transportation of natural gas and owns a natural gas liquids system connecting with mid-Continent and Rocky Mountain regions.

Another division, Energy Services, provides premium services to customers, primarily local natural gas distribution companies. It gets the majority of its earnings from physical natural gas marketing.

With low prices, natural gas is becoming an increasingly popular energy source and more of it is being produced and moved.

Oneok has been a beneficiary as earnings have grown in a slow and steady manner.

In 2012, earnings were $1.64 a share, compared to $1.67 the previous year. But analysts are forecasting a 9% increase in 2013 and a 3% increase in 2014.

In the most recent quarter, EPS grew at 13% from the year-ago period, well above estimates, and revenue jumped 18%. Analysts are forecasting a 5% EPS increase in Q4. The company will report results Feb. 24 after the close.

Dividends have been growing steadily. Oneok pays out $1.60 a year in dividends, which translates to a 2.6% yield. The stock is currently trading near an all-time high.

The five-year Earnings Stability Factor is 6 on a 0 to 99 scale, where low numbers correspond to stable earnings growth.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.



This article appears in: Investing , Investing Ideas

Referenced Stocks: OKE , OGS

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