Oneok (OKE) announced it will acquire its affiliated master limited partnership, or MLP, Oneok Partners LP.
The deal signals that the MLP structure may be a broken model.
Like the rest of the oil and gas industry, Oneok has struggled to produce cash due to lower commodity prices. Oneok is following the developing trend of eliminating a key component of the MLP structure called incentive distribution rights or IDRs.
With oil just above $50 per barrel, IDRs are much less attractive. Oneok could also be trying to get ahead of a Trump tax reform that could cause double taxation on MLPs.