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Jim Cramer circles back to his No. 1 pipeline play after a 'tectonic shift' in energy

With the landscape changing for pipeline operators recently, Jim Cramer made a bold call for investors to circle back to these stocks.

"With oil prices back in the $50s and U.S. production set to rise dramatically next year, it is time to circle back to the pipeline plays, and right now my favorite one is Magellan Midstream Partners," the "Mad Money" host said.

For ages, Cramer has advised investors to stay on the sidelines for pipelines, which act as a toll road for oil and gas transportation. When energy prices fell, many players encountered less use, a loss of pricing power and eventually many companies had to cut their dividends, which eliminated the exact yield that make many master limited partnerships (MLPs) so attractive to investors.

To make matters worse, the dividend cuts meant that MLPs became bond market equivalent stocks, and were hammered mercilessly in anticipation of an interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve.

Suddenly, the playing field has changed for MLPs. First, Donald Trump won the election, and it looks to Cramer that the president-elect will be very pro-petroleum and pro-pipeline.





Magellan Pipeline Partners
Source: Magellan Pipeline Partners
"Needless to say, this is a tectonic shift versus the Obama administration." -Jim Cramer

"Needless to say, this is a tectonic shift versus the Obama administration, which has been a lot more focused on fighting climate change and protecting the environment," Cramer said.

Meanwhile, some of Trump's cabinet nominations don't even believe in climate change.

The second major event was when OPEC released a production freeze agreement, which prompted crude to rally into the $50s and escape the grip of the $40s.

Cramer's top pick in the space was Magellan Midstream Partners, which has made a series of acquisitions, giving it 9,700 miles of pipelines for refined products and 2,100 miles of crude pipelines, along with storage facilities that could hold 23 million barrels and five marine terminals for imports and exports.

The reason why Cramer likes Magellan is because of its diversified assets, with exposure to refined products, crude and even ammonia. That means if the price of crude suddenly falls again, Magellan could be less vulnerable than its peers.

It also has very high quality oil-related assets, such as the Longhorn Pipeline. A majority of Magellan's money comes from fee-based business, which means it has less exposure to volatile swings in commodity prices.

It also has a 4.5 percent yield, which could continue to attract income-seeking investors. Cramer suspects that it could increase its distribution, as the company has raised its payout every quarter since 2010.

"This is the only pipeline company that truly didn't stumble during the down turn. It could be the one that does the best now that we are back on terra firma with a President-elect who thinks building new pipelines is a great way to create jobs," Cramer said.

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