Spectra Energy

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Natural gas firm Spectra Energy ( SE) is involved in every step of the nat gas process, from pulling it out of the ground to transporting it over its 19,000 mile pipeline network to even distributing it to retail customers. The firm currently pays out a 28 cent quarterly dividend, a payout that puts Spectra's yield at a hefty 3.83%. But that dividend could be heading higher this year.

In short, Spectra is one of the most diversified nat gas pure plays on the market today, a distinction that hasn't exactly been positive in the past couple of years as natural gas prices skidded along lows. But nat gas consumption has been climbing steadily over that period as users looked for lower-priced alternatives to crude oil. That trend bodes well for Spectra and its peers.

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Financially, Spectra is in good shape. While debt is high, massive cash flow generation more than covers the firm's obligations. And on the income statement side, top and bottom line numbers continue to grow quickly as Spectra's scale increases while the firm maintains huge net margins.

While Spectra has already announced another 28 cent dividend payable in September, I think it's likely we'll still see a bigger payout later in 2012.

Spectra shows up on a recent list of 8 Stocsk Benefiting From North America's Energy Boom.

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