Stocks to buy

The 3 Best Natural Gas Stocks to Buy Now: July Edition

With U.S. Presidential elections around the corner, there are several sectors in the spotlight. The reason being potential policy changes and their impact on growth. As an example, decarbonization investments have increased under President Biden. However, if Donald Trump is elected, energy transition is likely to be decelerated. Amidst these concerns, it’s a good time to consider exposure to natural gas stocks.

An important point to note is that Wood Mackenzie expects “$7.7 trillion in investment for the US energy sector over 2023-50.” However, in a delayed transition scenario, the investment is likely to be lower by $1 trillion. While this is negative, the overall investment expectations are robust. I would therefore look at any volatility as a good opportunity to consider exposure to natural gas stocks and other renewable energy themes.

This column focuses on three natural gas stocks that look attractive from a long-term investment perspective. As investments towards clean energy sources increases, these natural gas focused companies are likely to benefit.

EQT Corporation (EQT)

Source: rafapress / Shutterstock.com

EQT Corporation (NYSE:EQT) is among the largest natural gas producers in the United States. In the last 12 months, EQT stock has remained largely sideways. This provides a good accumulation opportunity with the stock also offering a dividend yield of 1.73%.

It’s worth noting that EQT has 30-years of de-risked inventory and approximately 4,000 de-risked locations. This provides clear revenue and cash flow visibility for the coming years. An important point to note is that the company’s free cash flow break-even is just above $2.5/MMBtu. This underscores my view on healthy cash flows as natural gas price is already recovering from multi-decade lows.

EQT estimates that data center and AI boom coupled with additional coal retirement will translate into incremental natural gas demand of 10Bcf/d in the U.S. by 2030. EQT Corporation is positioned to benefit from this transition towards cleaner sources of energy.

From a financial perspective, EQT has an investment grade balance sheet. The company has further identified $5 billion of debt reduction through asset sale and free cash flows. Credit metrics will therefore continue to improve and I expect steady dividend growth.

Cheniere Energy (LNG)

Source: Aerial-motion / Shutterstock.com

Cheniere Energy (NYSE:LNG) is another natural gas company to buy at attractive valuations. LNG stock trades at a forward P/E of 21.5x and offers a dividend yield of 1%.

As an overview, Cheniere is an operator of the Sabine Pass LNG terminal with a production capacity of 30mtpa. Further, the company also operates the Corpus Christi LNG terminal with a capacity of approximately 25mtpa.

It’s worth noting that Cheniere has guided for an additional 35mtpa of capacity addition in the coming years. This is likely to translate into revenue, EBITDA, and dividend growth. The storage & transportation company is targeting annual dividend growth of 10%.

For the current financial year, Cheniere has guided for adjusted EBITDA of $5.5 to $6 billion. Further, distributable cash flow is expected to be in the range of $2.9 to $3.4 billion. With the company focused on liquefaction capacity contracted for the long term, distributable cash flow visibility is likely to remain robust.

Flex LNG (FLNG)

Source: shutterstock.com/Wojciech Wrzesien

Flex LNG (NYSE:FLNG) is a provider of seaborne transportation of liquefied natural gas. FLNG stock has declined by 13% in the last 12 months and trades at an attractive forward P/E of 11.6x. Further, the dividend yield is robust at 11.11%. For income investors, FLNG stock is therefore worth considering.

Currently, Flex LNG has a fleet of 13 LNG carriers. These carriers have high contract coverage that provides revenue and cash flow visibility. Dividends are therefore secure.

To put things into perspective, the combined charter backlog for the fleet is 49 years. Further, if options are exercised, the backlog will increase to 68 years. With a strong demand for LNG from China and emerging Asia, it’s likely that the charter backlog will remain strong.

The company further estimates that the third wave of LNG (2025 to 2030) will add more than 200mtpa of new capacity. This is another factor to believe that demand will remain strong even with significant newbuild deliveries expected between 2025 and 2027. Overall, with clear cash flow visibility, good fundamentals, and industry tailwinds. FLNG stock will create value in the long term.

On the date of publication, Faisal Humayun did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

On the date of publication, the responsible editor did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. 

Faisal Humayun is a senior research analyst with 12 years of industry experience in the field of credit research, equity research and financial modeling. Faisal has authored over 1,500 stock specific articles with focus on the technology, energy and commodities sector.

Articles You May Like

Get Your Money Out of These 3 Tech Stocks by August 1
Jeff Bezos Is Selling $5B of Amazon Stock. Why You Should Sell Some, Too.
3 Consumer Tech Powerhouses to Buy in July
If You Can Only Buy One Meme Stock in July, It Better Be One of These 3 Names
3 Overvalued Stocks Teetering on the Brink of Collapse