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7 Natural Gas Stocks to Watch

3. Energy Transfer Partners (ETP - Get Report), a limited partnership, engages in natural gas operations with four business segments: intrastate transportation and storage; interstate transportation; midstream retail propane; and other retail propane related operations.

Of the 12 analysts covering the stock, 33% recommend buying and 58% suggest a hold. The stock's average 12-month price target is $51.00, which is 20.1% higher than the current price, as per a Bloomberg consensus.

For the second quarter of 2011, the company recorded total revenue of $1.6 billion as compared to $1.3 billion in the year-ago quarter. Net income attributable to partners increased multi-fold to $148.2 million from $42.8 million in the second quarter of 2010. Diluted net income per limited partner unit stood at 19 cents, vs. net loss of 26 cents in the prior-year period. Distributable cash flow for the quarter increased $23.3 million to $223.3 million from the same period last year.

For the quarter, the company produced NGLs of 50,728 Bbls/d, while Equity NGLs produced 17,137 Bbls/d. Meanwhile, NGL transportation and NGL fractionation volumes were recorded at 128,127 Bbls/d and 14,806 Bbls/d, respectively.

The company recently announced full syndication of the $3.7 billion acquisition financing provided by Credit Suisse to finance the previously announced acquisition of Southern Union Company. The company's chief executive said ETP is on track to complete the transaction by the first quarter of 2012.

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