Another revenue stabilizer is that the prices charged by long-haul pipeline operators are regulated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
That said, some investors are worried that the realization of President Barack Obama's latest tax proposals -- some of which is seen as unfriendly towards energy companies -- will hurt the MLPs' tax advantage.
"Will there be a fundamental reform in the tax code?" asks Cunnane. "If there were, that's where I think MLPs would be exposed to a change. When does it become more likely? Maybe in a scenario where the house, senate and presidency are all held by same party."
"They wouldn't be singled out in the change," he continued."I think the odds of MLPs being impacted by tax change are extremely minimal over the next year. But there are rising odds as you pass that period -- especially if we end up in a scenario where one party controls all. In a fundamental reform, I think there would be some concern."
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