Energy Transfer Partners buys Sunoco for $5.3B

Sunoco Energy Transfer Partners (NYSE: ETP) - a natural gas pipeline company - recently acquired Sunoco in a deal reported to be worth about $5.3 billion.

The deal will allow Energy Transfer to move more fully into the transportation of liquid hydrocarbons as Sunoco has a number of such pipelines around the U.S., according to The Associated Press.

Energy Transfer CEO and chairman Kelcy Warren said that the move allows the company to get its foot into the oil industry a bit more.

"We needed to be more diversified," he said. "We needed to be more involved in the movement of crude."

The explosion of unconventional gas production, mostly through the development of shale plays, has pushed natural gas to decades-low prices. Due to this a number of natural gas companies have slowed operations and those that are able are looking to become more involved in crude oil production - or in Energy Transfer's case, crude oil transportation.

Another way some companies are looking to combat low natural gas prices in the U.S. is by shipping the hydrocarbon in liquid form - LNG - overseas to more lucrative markets, like Japan.

Prospects for oil pipelines in the U.S. can be found at PennEnergy's Research area.

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