The largest holding in the fund is Kinder Morgan (KMI), at 9% of the fund. KMI is an affiliate of the widely known Kinder Morgan Partners (KMP). Although KMP, which is a master limited partnership, has a higher yield, KMI still has a healthy 4.26% payout.
Because MLPX just started trading, there is no yield information available for the fund, but the underlying index has a 3.12% yield. If we account for the 0.45 expense ratio, we can calculate a yield of 2.67%, but as always, the fund's actual yield could be different.
The expense ratio bears further mention because it is lower than some of the larger funds in the space with the different structures. The Alerian MLP ETF (AMLP), which has accumulated an impressive $6 billion in assets, has an 0.85% expense ratio plus the tax obligation, which is disclosed at 4%.
AMLP only owns MLPs, and MLPs are usually less volatile than the broad market. MLPX is only 25% in MLPs, so it remains to be seen whether the affiliated companies and other non-MLP holdings combine to offer a similar volatility profile as the Alerian fund. AMLP has performed as hoped for; it has low volatility and a 5.98% trailing yield.The huge assets in AMLP speak to how popular the MLP space is, and if MLPX can deliver similar yields and similar volatility in a cheaper fund with less complicated tax implications, then it should be a big success. As a final note, the nuances of the taxation are beyond the scope of this article but are something that any investor interested in MLPs or funds that own MLPs needs to explore with a tax professional in order to determine whether the securities are suitable for his or her portfolio. At the time of publication, Nusbaum had no positions in companies mentioned, but many of his firm's clients owned KMP Follow @randomroger This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.
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