Distributions play a measurable role in overall yieldco performance. So yieldcos should be assessed based on total returns, or distribution capital gains. Since most yieldcos are under a year old, we’ll look at total returns since inception until March 19, 2015 (holding period return). And, we’ll assume that dividends aren’t reinvested.
NRG Yield (NYLD)
NRG Yield (NYLD) is the oldest renewable energy yieldco. The stock started trading on July 17, 2013. Investors that bought the stock before that day’s closing paid $27.25 a share. These investors have gotten a 93.9% return on their investment. This translates to an annualized compounded rate of return of 48.6%. The stock closed at $50.80 on March 19, 2015.
Pattern Energy Group (PEGI)
Pattern Energy Group’s (PEGI) adjusted closing price came in at $23.27 on September 27, 2013, the first day of trading. The stock has given a 28.2% return since then, or a compound annualized return of 18.4%. The stock closed at $27.88 on March 19, 2015.
Abengoa Yield (ABY)
ABY closed at $37.00 on June 13, 2014, its first day of trading. ABY has lost around 7.6% value, or 8.9% annualized, even after accounting for distributions. The stock closed at $33.19 on March 19, 2015.
NextEra Energy Partners (NEP)
NEP closed at $32.00 on June 27, 2014, its first day of trading. NEP has given a total return of 33%, or 48% annualized, up until March 19, 2015.
TerraForm Power (TERP)
TERP closed at $33.09 on July 18, 2014, its first day of trading. TERP has given a total return of 6.7%, or 10.2% annualized, up until March 19, 2015.
Most yieldco stocks have outperformed the Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLE) over respective periods.