Early reporting of fourth-quarter 2008 distributions growth for a group of 10 master limited partnerships (MLPs) came in 0.29% above Bloomberg consensus distribution per unit, says Wunderlich Securities Inc.’s analyst, Ethan Bellamy.

Wunderlich Securities Inc. is a Memphis, Tennessee-based U.S. broker-dealer with capital markets operations headquartered in Denver, Colorado.

Bellamy reports that year-on-year growth for the MLPs averages 10.95% on an equal-weighted basis. Sequential growth in these issuers equates to 1.99%.

“Collectively, Wall Street is looking for 1.15% sequential and 16.35% year-over-year growth from the remaining issuers on an equal-weighted basis,” he says.

Within the early group, Quicksilver Gas Services LP leads the pack with a whopping 23.3% year-on-year growth. Genesis Energy LP came in second with 15.8%. TransMontaigne Partners LP reported 13.5% growth, closely followed by Copano Energy LLC (12.7%), Enterprise GP Holdings LP (12.2%) and El Paso Pipeline Partners LP (11.3%).

In the single-digits group, Enterprise Products Partners LP reported 6% growth, followed by Oneok Partners LP (5.4%) and Plains All American Pipeline LP (5%) and Duncan Energy Partners LP (4.3%).

“Generally, we view these results as favorable and supportive of our bullishness on the group, due to valuation,” says Bellamy. “However, the full impact of a negative operating environment for most MLP subsectors is not likely to be felt for at least another quarter, in our view.”