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7 Natural Gas Stocks to Watch

1. Atlas Pipeline Partners (APL) is a provider of natural gas gathering, processing and treating services in the Anadarko and Permian Basins in the South West and Mid-Continent regions of the U.S. The company also provides natural gas gathering services in the Appalachian Basin in the North Eastern region of the U.S.

Of the five analysts covering the stock, 80% recommend buying and the rest suggest a hold. There are no sell ratings on the stock. The stock's average 12-month price target is $40.50, which is 30.4% higher than the current price, as per a Bloomberg consensus.

For the second quarter of 2011, the company's total revenue and other income increased to $350.2 million from $216.2 million in the year-ago quarter. Net income attributable to common limited partner s and the general partners stood at $7.12 million as compared to net loss of $294,000 in the year-ago quarter. Processed natural gas volumes recorded 538 million cubic feet per day (Mmcfd), a 31% increase from the second quarter of 2010. Meanwhile, the weighted average NGL price stood at $1.25 per gallon for the quarter, a 42% increase year-over-year.

Mid-August, the company paid a distribution of 47 cents per common limited partner unit for the second quarter, indicating 17.5% sequential growth from the first quarter of 2011. Also, for the second half of 2011, the company said it estimates distribution per unit every quarter to be in the range of 45 to 50 cents.

Recently, Atlas announced signing an agreement with DCP NGL Services, a subsidiary of DCP Midstream Partners (DPM), to sell its NGL production from each of APL's processing facilities in Oklahoma and Texas. These agreements are based on Mt. Belvieu NGL pricing with a term of 15 years each and will become effective at various times upon expiration of APL's existing NGL sales agreements.
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